New plan unveiled to make New York City subways safer

Wednesday, March 2, 2016
NYC cracking down on subway crime
Tim Fleischer has details on the city's new plan to make the subways safer.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Police Commissioner William Bratton introduced a new plan Wednesday to make the subways safer.

Police and city officials stress the subway system is the safest in the world, but they are making both interesting and noticeable patrol efforts in the subways.

Mayor de Blasio himself took to the subways, riding the R train from City Hall to attend a press conference at Brooklyn's Transit Headquarters.

Police efforts underground, he believes, make it safe for the 6 and half million riders each day, including a new radio system.

"This is an important moment. This is going to be the kind of radio system that provides safety for our officers and for the public alike," said the mayor.

The NYPD is announcing several new initiatives in the subways to enhance safety -- including reprogramming all police radios so that officers above and below ground can communicate with each other.

"The ability of street level cops and their counterparts underground will now properly communicate with each other. We get our resources to incidents faster and keep people safer," said Chief of Department James O'Neill.

Another effort riders will be seeing are train inspections every day and every tour, with a police sergeant and four to eight officers who will spread out along a platform.

"An officer goes in a separate car, looks at everybody, makes sure everything is ok. They are seen. And then comes back out. We have substantially increased those," said Transit Chief Joe Fox.

They will also add response team surges of officers at various stations. And additional officers will be deployed at the Times Square Station, an important and one of the busiest stations.

"We are bringing that number up substantially. We are in the process of recruiting and identifying officers to make that a permanent command," said Fox.