Threatened by boater brandishing knife

Published: Wednesday, 22 September 2021

UNTIL recently I have been unsure about staff of any variety wearing body cameras and certainly I would not have put CaRT staff as likely users, writes Roger Fox.

However, an incident on our recent trip south on the Grand Union has changed my mind completely.

Just above tickover

Setting off from Bulbourne around 8am in the morning meant that I was very alert about not disturbing late sleepers and kept the same constant, just above tickover, speed throughout the transit of the summit.

As we emerged from under the trees at the south end I passed four moored boats all showing no sign of life. I heard shouting when well past the last boat. I looked round and a topless man had appeared through a Houdini hatch and was railing about my excessive speed.

Brandishing nine inch kitchen knife

Oh, it’s another of those I thought. Then I became aware of a man running alongside me shouting and brandishing a nine inch kitchen knife. He threatened to do me over at the lock. It was very scary, but I ignored him and after some distance he turned and headed back to his boat.

I have never experienced anything of this type in over 40 years of boating and it makes me appreciate the exposure to similar events which CaRT revenue staff must experience on a daily basis. They deserve to have the comfort of the cameras.

Public order offence

The incident has been reported to CaRT and the Hertfordshire police have recorded it as a public order offence and it has been given a Crime Number. Reporting may not bring direct prosecution, but it may help to build a picture for one in the future if there are other similar events.