BART announced today that it is debuting a new security app that allows its riders to become the eyes and ears for police. BART Watch, the agency explains, is a response to riders' requests for a more efficient and discreet way of relaying crimes and suspicious behavior in action.
BART Watch allows users to quietly report dangerous activities to police via texting a description, sending a photo, or make a voice call using their one-touch call system. It also allows users to select from a list of locations and categories of different activities to report include: crime in progress, robbery/theft, unattended bag, vandalism, and more. If a user sends a message where there's no cell service, the message will be delivered once the rider is back in an area with service. BART police will also use the app to send alerts to users.
BART Watch is available on both IOS and Android platforms, and is free and accessible through the BART website or by visiting your phone’s app store. It will be the first of its kind to be offered in English, Spanish, and Chinese.
Tips sent through the app can be done so anonymously, and if there is no service, texts will be saved until a solid connection can be made. All information sent through the app goes straight to the BART Police Dispatch, where reports will be handled in order of urgency. Police will also make use of the system, employing the app to send alerts to riders when there is an emergency.
And for those who don’t want to download the app, you can always just dial the BART Police via 510-464-7000.
Photo by Jason Schlachet via Flickr