Based on data from studies of subway crime in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco, a crime exposure scenario for the typical transit user is presented. The typical user of a rapid transit system goes through a stereotyped sequence of the events in riding from origin to destination, and at selected points in this sequence, transit users are more or less susceptible to crimes such as assault, robbery, and other crimes against persons. The initial point in the sequence is arrival at the station. Surveys of existing systems have not revealed frequent reports of crime at this point with the exception of auto thefts or breakins at "Park and Ride" facilities. Entry into the station involves stairways, walkways, ramps, and elevators or escalators, all of which provide a hazard in so far as they contain areas which are not under direct observation by the user. In areas not employing automatic fare collection devices token booth employees constitute a substantial proportion of robbery victims. Although not directed at users, such situations can pose a threat to bystanders, especially since statistics indicate that guns are often involved. The most dangerous point in the transit sequence is waiting for a vehicle, although it is entering the vehicle which places users in greatest risk of assault and battery crimes. Approximately one-third of all robberies and assault and battery crimes and one-half of all crimes against persons are committed on the trains. Leaving the vehicle presents special hazards during rush hours where high density traffic may again be the focus of assault and battery; this condition is actually much safer however than entering, probably as a result of greater patron density in entering vehicles. Leaving the station presents the least hazards, even though this activity takes place over the same stairs, walkways, etc., perceived to be the most dangerous portion on entry. References and tabular data are included.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Reprinted from Security of Patrons on Urban Transportation Systems, Pittsburgh--Transportation Research Institute, Carnegie-Mellon University, 1975, pp 5, 9-11, 33-38, 43.
  • Corporate Authors:

    John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated

    111 River Street
    Hoboken, NJ  United States  07030-6000
  • Publication Date: 1978

Media Info

  • Pagination: 13 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00454930
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Reprint
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jul 31 1986 12:00AM