Staff Report #5
January 30, 2019
To All Commissioners
Re: Transit Passenger Safety
That the report be NOTED and FILED.
The provision of a safe service is of paramount importance at London Transit both as an employer and a service provider. Staff Report #1, dated January 30, 2019 sets out the work plan with respect to ensuring a safe and healthy workplace for LTC employees. Specific to the safety of London Transit customers, a number of initiatives have been implemented over the past few years intended to both raise awareness with respect to the various safety measures in place as well as to improve the safety of London Transit customers while waiting for and riding the service.
Travel Safe Program
At the November 1, 2017 meeting, the rebranded Transecure program, now Travel Safe, was presented to the Commission. The new Travel Safe program was launched in early 2018 with a messaging campaign highlighting transit safety and security features.
The program has been re-branded as “Travel Safe” with the accompanying logo set out below.
In addition, the four key elements of the program are identified and are described at a high level in the initial communication material which was provided on-board buses and in bus shelters as well as on the London Transit website. Commentary with respect to the four key element descriptors are set out below.
Courtesy stops – Rider requested Courtesy Stops along LTC routes where safety permits
This messaging is intended to raise awareness with respect to the ability for passengers to request courtesy stops along the route where it is safe for the driver to do so. Details with respect to considerations in determining safety (i.e. too close to an intersection, cannot deploy the ramp, etc.) will be explained in greater detail on the website.
On-board Safety – On-board audio-video surveillance and ability for drivers to contact the police
This element raises awareness with respect to the safety features on-board the transit vehicle and the ability for LTC Operators to contact London Police Services via Dispatch should a situation require them to do so.
Community Safety – With close to 200 buses on the road, LTC has many eyes on the community to assist when needed.
This element addresses the fact that LTC plays a far greater role in community safety than that provided while customers are on-board the vehicle. The additional messaging that will be included on the website here will focus on the ability for Londoners to utilize LTC buses as a safe haven should they be in a threatening situation, or to flag down an LTC Operator if they are in need of immediate assistance where their safety is being threatened.
Incident Reporting – Report any suspicious or threatening activities to drivers and/or call 911
This element reminds the customer to advise the Operator if they are feeling unsafe or threatened while on-board or waiting at a stop. The messaging on the website will further describe the options for sending contacts to LTC Customer Service for follow up, noting that should the incident be of a criminal nature, the customer should call 911.
Shelter Replacement Program
Over the period of 2017-2018, all 380 London Transit shelters were replaced with a newer style shelter which included solar powered lighting. This feature provides lighting in all shelters, which is triggered by sensor to come on at dusk and is powered by a solar panel on the roof of the shelter. This program has resulted in improved safety for customers waiting for the bus at night, and has also enhanced the ability of LTC Operators to see people waiting for the bus at night.
Improved Lighting at Bus Stops
While the shelter upgrades have improved the feeling of safety while waiting for the bus at locations with a shelter, there are still a number of stops that do not have shelters installed that could benefit from improved lighting.
Advances in solar technology have provided new options for the provision of lighting to areas where a lack of power made it impossible. As such, administration will be installing and assessing a new product at four bus stop locations that have been subject of complaints with respect to lighting levels. The four locations that have been selected include:
- Stop #413 – Clarke at Royal southbound
- Stop #657 – Ernest at Conway southbound
- Stop #1741 – Springbank at Jarvis westbound
- Stop #2660 – Hamilton at Valley View Apartments westbound
The product being installed provides a push button on the pole which activates the light. The light remains on for a period of time which is definable by location. The light can be reactivated immediately by pushing the button again. The cost for each location is approximately $1,700 including installation. It is anticipated that the lights will be installed by the end of March 2019. The project will be funded through the 2019 Capital Budget Program.
Administration will assess the effectiveness of the lights to provide a greater sense of security for those waiting for the bus and determine if the project should be expanded to more locations throughout the system.
Katie Burns, Director of Planning
Concurred in by:
Kelly S. Paleczny, General Manager