CENTER CITY PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) - Septa police can be just a touch away on their transit watch app.
Not only is it helping find suspects and stop fights, but it's even helped save a life.
Transit watch has been up and running for almost a year now. Close to 5,000 Septa riders have downloaded the app and Septa Police say they're getting on average, ten tips per day
Teenagers fighting on septa is a regular complaint from riders as FOX 29 has reported on many occasions. Chief Nestel says the transit watch app has alerted police to at least 40 fights since last august.
“It's an opportunity for somebody to covertly give us information, not expose themselves, but to let us know that there's a potential problem on septa,” says Chief Nestel.
“Gives us an opportunity to get police headed that way and hopefully prevent an assault.”
The chief says the app has also been used to help Septa passengers who experience a medical emergency while using the transit system. In at least one case, the app alerted police to a case where a rider may have been trying to take their own life.
“Folks have notified us through the app and we're able to intercept that train and get medical assistance for them.”
Septa is also planning to use the app to help them track down suspects who commit crimes on Septa. Suspect’s photos can now get streamed out to app users riding on the system.
“I'd love to have one person on every train communicating with us. Not to be a rat, but to make it safe for everybody,” says Nestel.
Most of the transit watch calls involve quality of ride problems like pan handling, drunkenness, smoking on the system. These are issues that really bother riders. Chief Nestel says with nearly 5,000 riders already using the app, he hopes to see that number double even triple down the