St. Louis Metro released the results from the Metrolink Task Force Incident Report for Quarter 4 (October–December 2022), demonstrating continued progress in creating a safer transit system during the last few months of 2022.
Metrolink boardings were up another 7% from Quarter 3 of 2022 to Quarter 4 of 2022, while there was a slight drop in the total number of incidents per boarding — nine per 100,000 boardings (.00009), compared to 10 per 100,000 boardings (.0001) in Quarter 3, according to the agency's news release.
“The collaboration between Metro Transit and our law enforcement and contracted security partners are creating a greater security presence across the entire Metro Transit system that is continuing to create a safer transit environment for riders in the St. Louis region who are increasingly turning to the system to get to work, school and recreational activities,” said Kevin Scott, GM of security at Bi-State Development. Bi-State Development operates the Metro Transit public transportation system for the St. Louis region.
Proactive policing is police work that deters crime, reduces disorder, reduces fear of crime, or remedies specific concerns in a given area, with police action that occurs before a crime is committed. The shared commitment to this proven approach is translating into a majority (50%) of incident reports on the Metrolink system being self-initiated and generated by proactive policing, according to the agency.
A total of 145 incidents were reported in Quarter 3, down a little from the 178 reported in Quarter 3 and the 166 reported in Quarter 4 of 2022 when more secondary officers began assisting full-time police officers and deputies as well as contracted Allied Universal security officers assigned to Metrolink. This increased security presence resulted in a total of 660 incidents being reported in the 2022 calendar year, compared to 598 in the 2021 calendar year.
A large majority of the incidents reported continued to be for Standard of Conduct (70%), which includes trespassing and the proactive removal of known offenders in violation of Metro’s Ride and Abide Program. Violent Crime accounted for 24% of incidents reported, which was a drop of 5% from Quarter 3. Weapon violations accounted for 32% of the violent offense types as Metro and its partners continued to focus on proactive crime-fighting initiatives targeting known “hot spots.” Property Crime accounted for the remaining 6% of incidents reported.
“Proactive policing gives us the ability to deter crime as police take action prior to a crime being committed, and that’s really contributing to riders feeling safer while on Metrolink trains and station platforms,” Scott said.
The $52 million Secure Platform Plan has garnered more than $10 million in private funding commitments and will convert the Metrolink system from an open access system to a closed access system – with access granted only through paid fare – and access to station platforms controlled through integrated fare collection gates.
Another advancement in the Secure Platform Plan is the completion of the Real-Time Camera Center which is now operational and uses technology to further ensure the safety of customers and team members.
“This new center offers capabilities that are a complete game-changer and significantly enhance our proactive approach to safety and security on the Metro Transit system and at bi-state development facilities,” said Scott.