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Safety Tips for Philadelphia Public Transit Users

Public Transit Safety and Etiquette

Do you regularly rely on public transportation in the Philadelphia area? Like many other commuters you may rely on SEPTA to provide you with reliable transit. According to a fact sheet from PACommutes.com, following some simple safety and etiquette tips can help to ensure your own safety, as well as the safety of others around you.

What should you do to stay safe on city buses and trains? As the fact sheet explains, one of the first elements of public transportation safety is to avoid running to catch a train. On a related note, you should never attempt to board a subway or train once the doors have already begun to close. You can get caught in the door, and you can also risk tripping on the gap between the edge of the train platform and the door to the subway/train car.

In terms of personal safety and unsafe premises, it is also important to be aware of your surroundings. If you are waiting at a bus stop or a subway stop, try to stand in an area that is well lit and where other passengers are also waiting for the bus or the train. Whenever possible, you should avoid standing in unlit or poorly lit areas, as well as deserted areas. When you step off of a bus or a subway train, if you have concerns that someone is following you, you should go into the nearest occupied building and seek assistance. To help avoid a mugging or robbery, you should also avoid displaying any money or valuables when you are riding public transportation, and you should always keep your purse or shopping bags on your lap or between your feet.

Public announcements—whether over a loudspeaker on a subway car or on signage at a bus station—are also made to ensure your safety. Be sure to adhere to any safety directions that are supplied to passengers.

Getting the Facts and Figures About Public Transit Injuries 

How often do personal injuries occur on public transit? According to a fact sheet from the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, the following facts and figures are significant:

  • Public transit accidents and injuries reported on trains has remained relatively steady over the last decade, with a total of 631 fatalities reported in 2000 and 601 fatalities reported in 2010; and
  • Other forms of public transit, including city buses, have also seen relatively steady numbers of fatal accidents between 2000 and 2010, with 208 fatalities reported in 2000 and 215 reported in 2010.

If you suffered an injury on public transit, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer to determine your rights.

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