A new national study shows the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) was again America’s safest transit system in terms of serious crimes (Part I) in 2016 out of the top 12 transit agencies. The study was conducted by the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA).
Part I crimes are serious offenses that can occur with regularity and are likely to be reported to police. They include aggravated assault, arson, burglary (breaking and entering), criminal homicide, larceny theft, rape, and robbery.
“The Maryland Department of Transportation’s MTA has made tremendous improvements over the past two years, thanks in large part to the launch of Governor Hogan’s BaltimoreLink plan to transform transit in the region,” said Transportation Secretary Pete Rahn. “As this study shows, the safety of our customers remains the top priority.”
The MTA had no homicides, shootings, or rapes and a total of 240 Part I crimes for the year 2016 — the lowest total of the transit systems in the cities and states studied, which includes Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New Jersey, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C.
With interagency collaboration at the federal, state, and local levels, MTA Police reported the fourth straight year of declining crime figures, according to the study. The number of serious crimes reported has decreased from 388 in 2013 to 285 in 2014, 255 in 2015, and 240 in 2016 on MTA local bus, light rail, metro subway, MARC train, mobility, and commuter bus.
“Nothing is more important than the safety and security of our passengers and operators,” said MTA Administrator/CEO Paul Comfort. “We are proud to have the fewest serious crimes of any of the top 12 transit agencies in America. The numbers show that the MTA continues to be a very safe transit system to ride.”
The MTA Police Force added 20 uniformed police officer positions over the last two years to enhance its available resources. MTA Police utilize the Compstat process to smartly deploy its resources (data driven deployment/predictive policing) and have embraced the latest technologies available in security monitoring as a force multiplier. The MTA Police Force has approximately 49 memorandums of agreement with federal, state, and local agencies, which greatly enhances its ability to provide a police response to patrons across the state.