It’s been an exciting day at ELERTS as we announced another first – the availability of the See Say app, developed by ELERTS for The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA). The app is designed to let riders easily and instantly report suspicious activity to Transit authorities with their smartphones – crowdsourcing public safety with thousands of eyes and ears on the ground. When people see something, they can send something – with photos, text and incident location details that go directly to Transit Police.
“If you see something, say something” is a public safety campaign widely promoted by railway transit systems and airports worldwide. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is promoting “See Something Say Something” to urge citizens to be alert and to help keep each other safe. The MBTA, the 5th largest transit system in the U.S. carrying almost 1.4 million riders per day, was the first subway system in America and is now the first transit system to incorporate Smartphones, 2-way real-time messaging and under-30-second reporting into the See Something Say Something campaign, with the help of ELERTS. The opportunity to crowdsource information from riders who witness suspicious or criminal activities has not been realized by transit systems. The See Say app allows MBTA riders to proactively communicate with transit authorities and also to receive alerts from authorities in emergency situations. For instance, the MBTA can send BOLO (Be On the Look Out) reports to riders, to enlist their help to find missing persons or persons of interest.
The development of the MBTA app is an exciting first that we helped to roll out for the transit industry – and just the tip of such developments that we’ll be a part of as more industries embrace smartphones and crowdsourcing in new and more strategic ways. We see such use as applicable across many more infrastructure organizations like hospitals, school and office campuses, and power utilities. There are exciting developments to come as organizations recognize how they can use ELERTS to improve safety for their employees and customers. Stay tuned!
You can read more about the See Say app, here, or download it from MBTA.com or the iTunes app store.