MTA Security Efforts Earn Top Industry Award
MTA NYC Transit's Department of Security has been awarded the American Public Transit Association's (APTA) Gold – Excellence in Safety/Security Award for 2011.
The award is in recognition of New York City Transit's EAGLE Team, which is responsible for the security of Transit facilities. The award was announced over the weekend during APTA's annual Bus and ParaTransit Conference, Safety and Security Excellence Awards Program,' which was held in Memphis Tennessee.
"We are extremely proud and grateful for this award. APTA's recognition of the Eagle Team speaks highly of the hard, dedicated work performed by the many people who keep our facilities safe. This program serves as a successful model for transit systems around the country," said NYC Transit Thomas Prendergast.
The EAGLE team is responsible for the protection of subway yards and lay-up areas, focusing on identification and elimination of vulnerabilities which may exist within the NYC Transit System's many transit facilities.
"The NYC Transit Department of Security is proud of the contributions we have been able to make in this effort. Working collaboratively with all our local and federal partners, including the NYPD, the MTA PD, MTA Security and the TSA and FTA, we continue to do all we can to ensure that our customers, employees and infrastructure remain safe and secure," said Vincent DeMarino, NYC Transit's Vice President of Security.
When focusing on asset protection, among the team's key critical goals are to stop anyone from being able to breach and defeat any security measures currently in place. After a careful and thorough review, security initiatives were put into place to better 'button down' NYC Transit's rolling stock, especially when vehicles are parked and not in use. This effort helps ensure that trains and buses are not susceptible to criminal activities of any kind, including graffiti vandalism. Since the EAGLE Team was launched in September 2007, they have worked closely with the NYPD to decrease, significantly, the incidence of graffiti vandalism by over 75 percent.
The EAGLE team, comprised of thoroughly screened and trained personnel with extensive past law enforcement experience, is also responsible for overseeing the off board fare payment initiatives that are a crucial part of Select Bus Service. Off board fare collection has contributed to the success of Select Bus Service which has increased travel times along the Bx12 and M15 routes by as much as 20 percent.