This Sunday marks the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Capital Metro is joining many other transit authorities throughout the nation to observe a moment of remembrance to honor those who died as a result of those attacks. At precisely 12 noon on Sunday, all Capital Metro buses and MetroAccess vehicles will pull over and observe a moment of silence, and we invite riders to participate as well.
Our President/CEO Linda S. Watson said, “America changed on Sept. 11, 2001, and the transportation industry changed along with it. On Sunday we will give our customers and employees an opportunity to honor those who lost their lives and remind everyone that we all play an important role in keeping our communities safe by reporting any suspicious activity.”
A lot of things have changed since 9/11. One of the many programs initiated at the national level after 9/11 is Transit Watch, a program started by the Federal Transit Administration in 2003. It’s basically Neighborhood Watch on wheels (or rails): the program encourages the active participation of transit passengers and employees in maintaining a safe transit environment. Transit Watch also helps foster the role of transit as a safe haven in communities across the country.
Capital Metro participates in the program, and it’s a pretty good idea, really, when you consider that Capital Metro’s buses travel more than 30,000 miles per day throughout the service area. Capital Metro riders and employees can help be the eyes and ears over all of those many miles.
And they are. Each month, through the Go Line, riders report about 200 instances per month of strange or out of place behavior they’ve witnessed. Additionally, reports from bus operators and field supervisors have helped to capture crime suspects and sometimes, to prevent a crime from occurring.
All of that information helps Capital Metro identify security trends and helps to inform the scheduling of peace officers who work with Capital Metro to keep the system safe everyday. Like our buses’ electronic signage on Sunday will read, “United we stand,” together we can keep our community safe.