MBTA to double number of security cameras

Grants pave way for expansion

A series of grants, notably a $6.5 million grant two weeks ago, will allow the MBTA to add thousands of security cameras across the system, doubling the current number.

The MBTA has 15 to 20 projects already in the works with many more in the queue line, said Randy Clarke, senior director of security and emergency management for the MBTA.


“The good thing about cameras is they’re neutral,” Clarke said. “You get good information quickly.”

The projects will add cameras to bus garages, maintenance locations for the trains and buses, stations, and the trains and buses themselves. Each camera costs “a couple thousand” dollars, not including installation costs, but the initiative is 100 percent federally funded, Clarke said.

Get Fast Forward in your inbox:
Forget yesterday's news. Get what you need today in this early-morning email.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

MBTA officials wouldn’t disclose the total number of cameras that will ultimately be watching T installations.

Aside from helping officials deal with emergencies like a fire or injured person, the cameras also help with service issues and crimefighting.

“By increasing the number of cameras we will increase the plausibility that we can ensure the safety and security of the 1.3 million riders per day,” said Joseph O’Connor, superintendent-in-chief of the MBTA Transit Police.


Two weeks ago, a man was arrested just a day after stabbing a woman at the Ashmont Station on the Red Line. Authorities distributed the suspect’s image from the security cameras, and said that produced a break in the case.

“We have a very safe system,” O’Connor said, “but we certainly believe the cameras do help — and will continue to help us — solve more crimes.”

Matt Woolbright can be reached at
Loading comments...
Real journalists. Real journalism. Subscribe to The Boston Globe today.
You're reading  1 of 5 free articles.
Get UNLIMITED access for only 99¢ per week Subscribe Now >
You're reading1 of 5 free articles.Keep scrolling to see more articles recomended for you Subscribe now
We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles.
Continue reading by subscribing to for just 99¢.
 Already a member? Log in Home
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of
Marketing image of