Get to know the "ins and outs" of your transit system. A key goal of Transit Watch is to inform the public before an emergency occurs.
On the Train:
- Be familiar with all station exits in the event some exits may not be accessible in an emergency
- Know the location of emergency intercoms on trains and platforms for use in reporting hazards, suspicious behavior or unattended items.
- Be aware of the location of the "third rail" - which carries high voltage electric current.
- Never walk on or alongside the tracks.
- Never run or jump across the tracks.
- Be alert, stay back on the platform and always expect a train!
On the Bus:
- Be familiar with all emergency exits.
- Depending on the vehicle, emergency exits may include windows and ceiling hatches.
Get to know transit personnel. Advise others to listen to instructions provided by transit officials everyday and in the vent of an emergency.
Transit Watch depends on your eyes and ears. If you hear, see or smell something suspicious, trust your instincts and report it.
Unattended items simply may be lost or left behind. Look for the following characteristics to report suspicious items to MARTA Police Officers:
- Placement in an out of the way location
- Attached batteries, wires, tanks, bottles or bags that might contain chemicals or explosives
- Matches something described in a threat or has a threatening note attached
- Smoke, mist, gas, vapor, odor, or fluid seeping from a package or bag
- Individuals nearby showing signs of illness or distress
Suspicious activity relates to circumstances, timing and behavior NOT race, color, ethnicity or gender. Familiarize yourself with the following signs of suspicious activity and report people who are:
Recommended Course of Action:
- In an unauthorized or restricted area
- Loitering, staring or watching employees and passengers
- Pacing, nervous or jumpy
- Abandoning items and quickly departing
- Acting in a disorderly manner or disturbing others
- Photographing equipment or secure areas
- Carrying a weapon or appearing to have a weapon
- Wearing clothing that is extremely inappropriate for the weather (e.g. heavy coat on a hot day)
Do not touch suspicious items or confront someone with suspicious behavior! Tell a MARTA employee, police officer, or call 911.
Transit Watch aims to prepare riders for various emergencies including transit evacuation. Take the time to be prepared.
When transit passengers are prepared, the result is an effective first line of defense against potential accidents and hazards including natural or man-made disasters. Transit evacuation is rare and should take place only when directed by transit officials.
- Create an advanced plan for maintaining contact with family members if separated as a result of an emergency.
- Keep a record of all contacts for emergency and update it regularly if needed.
- Select a location outside your home as a family meeting point should your home need to be evacuated.
- Identify alternate routes and means of reaching your meeting point in the event that typical routes and means are unavailable.
- Keep maps of your local transit system and local area handy for reference.
MARTA Police officers constantly patrol the system, both in regular and in random beats. They have the same training, certification, rights and powers as any Georgia law enforcement officer. Feel free to approach an officer for help.
To call MARTA Police
- In a rail station, pick up a white or blue phone. (To report a fire, use the red phone.)
- On a train, use the emergency intercom which is located at the front end of every railcar and ask the operator for help.
- On a bus, ask the driver to use the on-board phone to call for help.
- Call MARTA Police, dial (404) 848-4911.
- Dial #MPD on cell phone (AT&T, Sprint, Nextel, Verizon). Blackberry users dial #673