OSU Safety Rides Feature New Messages
Ohio State University's Student Safety Service is prepared for the fall semester.
It starts with a phone call. A student dispatcher asks, "Where do you want to be picked up and where to you want to be dropped off?"
They give 25,000 rides every school year. OSU Student Safety Service drivers shuttle passengers wherever they need to go on campus.
"We're kind of like the white knights of campus. When you're not feeling safe and our vehicle shows up. Clearly marked and with emergency lights, you know you have a safe option to get home," said program coordinator Sean Bolender.
Students tell the dispatcher where they are, where they need to go and the drivers make it happen. A GPS system tracks every run on a campus-wide map.
"A lot of people take us because they're afraid of walking on their own or a place that isn't that well light," says escort driver Neal Wilson.
The free service is available from 7:00 p.m. until 3:00 in the morning every day.
Realizing each trip lasts about 10 minutes, the escorts take advantage of their brief, but captive audience to share safety messages on headrest TV monitors. One shows the perils of distracted driving.
The drivers stay pretty busy. They make up to 100 runs every night. Their goal is always the same: get students, faculty and staff safely to their destination.
OSU student Abishek Mohan needed a ride from his lab class on Kinnear Road tonight to a spot across campus. He's a frequent user.
"They run until 3:00 a.m. so it's definitely good if you hang out on campus or something and your outside," he said.
The service is one more option to stay safe on a campus with a population bigger than some cities.
For more information and the number to call for a ride visit: http://www.ps.ohio-state.edu/sss/escort_info/