We’re increasing enforcement of prohibition of drug use on our system

We have been getting an increasing number of rider complaints about the use of drugs on our system. We’ve heard you, and we take your complaints and frustration with this issue seriously.    

Metro is stepping up the enforcement of our zero-tolerance policy prohibiting drug use on our system. 

To be clear: Possessing an illegal drug or substance, smoking of any kind, and drinking or possessing alcohol of any kind has been and continues to be strictly prohibited on our system.  

Your help is appreciated –– and makes a difference. If you see illegal activity, please take the time to report it. The best way to report:  

•Call 888.950.SAFE (7233).

•Report with the Transit Watch app, which allows you to send text messages and photos directly to our security team, 24 hours a day. The Transit Watch app is available for free; get the app here for iPhones and here for Android phones.

•Use the intercom to tell the train operator or telling a Transit Security Officer.

You deserve a safe, clean and comfortable system – and your continued feedback is important. Please let us know about your experiences on Metro – good, bad and in between.  

Categories: Safety

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28 replies

  1. Metro authority should be ashamed of themselves for letting the system deteriorate the way it has, absolutely shameful. And to think people are getting paid to run this system, neglect at it’s finest……

    • Lametro current board is out of touch with riders and it has been for a long time! They do not use the system that is set up for the poor mostly minority member rider! They are no longer to be trused to do what is in the best interests of the riders . It is time for a drastic change!!!!!

  2. I was leaving 7th and Metro Station a week ago and noticed 3 individuals lighting their crack pipes at the base of the escalator. As I exited I noticed 3 LAPD officers standing at the station entrance. I told them at what I just saw and they stared at me blankly and went back to discussing the Super Bowl. I stood across the street and they did nothing. I was totally amazed but not surprised.

  3. When I was 18 (21 years ago) going to college a cop cited me for taking a zip of my sprite. That’s what I get for not following the rules it set me back a couple of dollars but I learned a lesson. Now it seems you can do whatever you want. Metro I want my money back and I want it adjusted for inflation!

  4. Wouldn’t it make more sense to fix the announcement system on the Expo Line so that it actually functions for its first 3 stations instead of adding another useless announcement about drug use being illegal? The signage at 7MC is extremely confusing and those not accustomed to the Metro system have no way of knowing what train they’re on for the first 10 minutes of the ride.

  5. During the height of the deadly Covid pandemic, Metro wouldn’t or couldn’t enforce vaccinations for bus operators or face coverings for bus operators and passengers, so what exactly are Metro’s plans to combat smoking, drinking, and illegal drug use on buses and trains? Will Metro attempt to *prevent* these violations or just continue to maintain a collection of passenger reports? Also, what responsibilities do bus operators have when their buses are filled with the odor of burning cannabis or tobacco? Please stop insulting us riders with these nonsense “announcements”.

  6. Every time there’s discussion on crime on the system, Metro always releases the same template language about the Transit Watch app and the use of some sort of unarmed safety ambassadors. What will make people safe is the presence of authority on the system, but whoever is informing the Board is saying riders want less police to address equity concerns. This is not how the majority of riders feel at the moment when crime is becoming more rampant. Right now, unruly people have more power than authority because not enough action is being done.

  7. There is literally a homeless person smoking a crack rock on the red line heading to Union Station right now. So much for enforcement, Metro!!!

    Cars in the 530s as I noticed.

  8. The issue is that the Board of Directors and City of LA is full of progressive socialists (we all know this is the case, if you dont then you are the problem). These people refuse to act on issues such as crime and homelessness because it would go against their fundamental beliefs. Instead, they push ideas such as defund the police and showing compassion and equity towards criminals and mentally ill, violent individuals. These are all words Metro management throws out there, nothing will be done since issuing citations or arresting folks for misbehaving would be considered racism.

  9. As a daily rider of the A and B lines I can report that so far all this new effort seems to have amounted to is a few new announcements on the PA system, which I’m sure all the smokers and crack users are paying very close attention to. How can anyone take Metro seriously about this when they have allowed an “entrepreneur” to sell loose cigarettes, which I believe is a felony, at their 7th and Metro station for more than a year? Go to the subway level of 7th and Metro any day at 5:00 p.m. and he’s there not even attempting to be covert about selling single Newports, Camels and Marlboros. Meanwhile LAPD officers are just standing around a few feet away allowing it to happen while they sip coffee (in a station where food and drink are not allowed) and check their text messages. What a sweet deal for off duty LAPD officers – an 8 hour coffee break paid at their overtime rate and no accountability. .

  10. I agree with some of the other comments. Law Enforcement and metro staff are usually congested in one are and should be split up more.

  11. When something like this has to be announced you know how bad things have gotten. What Metro has allowed the rail lines to become is completely unacceptable. The Metro Head of Security should step down. The deplorable conditions on MetroRail are all anyone talks about anymore and most riders have given up on the system. MetroRail ridership was over 370k ten years ago. Now it is just 170k despite billions of dollars in new rail lines opening.

    I used to be a big supporter of Metro and public transit and even contributed to the Measure R campaign back in 2008, but unless Metro cleans things up soon, I would actually support withdrawing those tax measures. Metro won’t take this seriously until they are threatened with the loss of funds.

  12. Sadly, the problem is so bad that I will only start riding regularly again when there’s a noticeable, concrete difference on the system and not just words. I used to ride the Red Expo and Gold lines regularly and would enthusiastically recommended using it to others. But in 2020 what was bad but tolerable on the trains took a major turn for the worse. Now they are just shelters for the unhoused, especially those with drug and mental health problems. Nowadays, I drive and tell people how dangerous the system currently is. I still will use it every other month just to see if things have changed. I did a weeks ago, but nothing was different. No security or sign people there to help. No signs of this program metro launched last fall. So, there’s going have to be a physical difference on the system before I get out of my car. I feel for those who have work very hard and completely rely on the system everyday. They shouldn’t have to be put in this kind of dangerous situation.

    • It was nice of you not to include the horrible smells (at least on Purple/Red line). The smells make the New York metro seem like a spa day in comparison.

  13. There is very little enforcement of people drinking alcohol or drugs etc on the bus and rail I don’t see any and have not seen any enforcement of drinking alcohol enforcement or drug enforcement on the bus side I see very little of it on the rail you can’t even enforce the fares let alone enforce people not to drink alcohol or do drugs on the bus they eat drink everyday trash our buses and rails and make the services and it’s work as hard as it can to keep it clean it is ridiculous I hope and pray one day Metro will enforce policy that it sets instead of just saying a bunch of stuff and letting it go in one ear and not the other and force policy if drugs and alcohol are prohibited on bus and rail and force it and force the fares too have a blessed one

  14. Please make law enforcement officials split up. Having 4 officers patrol together in 1 place is wasteful. Instead have 4 officers at 4 different stations and always keep officers apart to cover more of the city. And when patrolling policemen object saying it’s a safety risk patrolling alone, millions of civilian taking the metro are also alone.

  15. Stop talking, start acting. actions speak louder than words.

    The fact that the agency even allowed this to go on based on this piece alone is despicable and a perfect example of why no one respects the system to begin with.

  16. Took Red Line at Hollywood/Western to Pershing Square Saturday early afternoon. Going was not too bad. Returning encountered homeless/mentally ill smoking on train. This has become a usual occurrence. Along with filthy train/floors/platforms that are empty and void of normal riding passengers.. Gross!!

  17. Thank you! Finally, feels like our concerns have been taken seriously. I also heard the announcement on the L Line today as I was riding. Hopefully this helps. Hope to see more law enforcement taking action against these bad actors.

  18. So glad that these issues have finally been noticed, since for too long metro has seemly not been willing to be accountable for these issues, prior to Covid19 and on up to the present. So how will this effect riders at night that are going to work, traveling from various events and or other functions? Homelessness, drug addicts, and mental illnesses work hand in hand. I was under the impression that metro has a homelessness outreach team that would engage this population, but I haven’t seen any. I worked for a year of various homelessness organizations in the Skid Row area as a Homelessness Outreach Case Manager and that Metro engagement component was talked about as far as what would be done on the metro. That was 2017-2018. Hey, so much for that. My final question is sense you sent this email about your concern, and we’ve been heard, let’s see how this works out when the Olympics arrives because the world will be watching.

    • This pathetic excuse of a city would simply do the same thing they did during the Super Bowl and the Grammys at Union Station.

      They will simply grab all the homeless and then move the rest somewhere outside the city during the events or open up some temporary housing.

      Heck, the city might even pay itself in the back by making some marketing stunt out of it.

      How do I know this: It was A) all over the news when this was going on and B) From first hand experience. The Gold Line which had already become a drug and urine infestation during the peak of Omicron was suddenly clean and homeless free 2 weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, and stayed that way until like 3 days after.

      That was probably the safest time to ride the system in this new decade so far.

      I’m assuming now that there are White Collar (tech sector) layoffs, colleges moving classes back to actual classrooms rather than remote and overall normalcy, there Will continue to be more complaints about the ENTIRE system overall as people are ready to ride again. And I’ll be here enjoying every minute of everyone ripping this agency a new one as Metro rightfully deserves. Enough is enough!!!