Transportation

Houston’s Transit Agency Wants To Hire More Police

METRO officials say they’ll look at reported crimes and rider feedback in deciding where to deploy the officers.

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Metro’s police force handles incidents on the bus and rail lines, and on the HOV lanes.

METRO plans to hire 20 more part-time police officers over the next several months, according to Tim Kelly, METRO’s Executive Vice-President of Operations, Public Safety & Customer Service.

“Between now and then you’ll begin to see more policy visibility,” said Kelly. “As we get them hired and trained they’ll be out there.”

METRO says it currently uses part-time police officers to enhance visibility at light rail stations and on the trains.

In deciding where to deploy officers, Kelly told News 88.7 they look at the feedback they receive on the METRO Connect app. Riders can use the app to communicate directly with police dispatch.

“We look at reported crime and other information, comments from our customers,” said Kelly. “Our goal is to make people feel comfortable when they’re riding the train.”

METRO currently employs over 190 peace officers who handle security for buses, trains, transit centers and park and ride lots. They also patrol the HOV lanes. The department includes a motorcycle unit and a canine program.

For the month of May, METRO reported 23 major security incidents on its properties. That’s the same number as the month before.

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Gail Delaughter

Gail Delaughter

Transportation Reporter

From early-morning interviews with commuters to walks through muddy construction sites, Gail covers all aspects of getting around Houston. That includes walking, driving, cycling, taking the bus, and occasionally flying. Before she became transportation reporter in 2011, Gail hosted weekend programs for Houston Public Media. She's also covered courts in...

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