By Kayla Lemay
Rumor has it that big changes are coming involving Bridgewater State University’s late night Safety Escort.
Safety, which is currently operated by the BSU Police Department and students they hire, runs from 7 p.m. to 3 a.m. nightly. Students will call the phone number for Safety and request a pickup at a specific location, such as a residence hall.
Safety will drive to the location, pick the students up, and bring them where they want to go around campus.
The rumored changes include but are not limited to: only buses, and said buses driving on a set route, like the buses that run across campus during the day. In addition, BSU PD will no longer operate safety – BSU Transit will take over.
Another rumor says that Safety will only run until 1 a.m.
The idea behind Safety is that students can call and get a ride when they don’t feel safe walking across campus – but it’s generally used more for when students don’t feel like walking or it’s too cold to walk from Scott to Crimson and back.
Whatever the reason that students use Safety, there’s a reason that it’s a call service and not run on a schedule. It’s actually much more convenient for all involved to keep Safety the way it is.
Currently, if you have your car parked in the very back of Tower lot, Safety will drive right to your car to pick you up.
BSU Transit’s closest stop? You could trek all the way to Shea-Durgin, or risk walking down the access road, which has no sidewalk, to get to the parking garage.
If you’ve never had to walk through Tower lot in subzero temperatures, consider yourself lucky. It isn’t fun.
Now consider things from the driver’s point of view. When it’s a slow night, safety drivers have the opportunity to park, and even take a bathroom break if they need it.
Yet if they’re on a set schedule, they lose that opportunity. Not only that, but driving in a constant loop from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. will waste a lot of gas over time. If BSU is trying to be more environmentally conscious, they may take a step back here.
And running until 1 a.m. also causes problems. Bogarts, the bar just across from the CVS on Summer Street, is extremely popular for BSU students over 21. Bogarts closes at 1 a.m. and on the more popular bar nights, Safety drivers with no calls will often wait on West Campus to pick up those leaving the bar after closing time.
If Safety shuts down at 1 a.m., who will pick up those leaving Bogarts?
Students may resort to driving drunk to avoid walking in cold temperatures, or they will loudly and drunkenly wander campus until they find their way back to their residence hall.
I don’t know about anybody else, but I already get annoyed from the drunk people screaming at 1 a.m. Imagine the amount of people that will be outside now?
Based on the rumored changes, Safety Escort will no longer be an escort, and you will really no longer be safe.
You will have to walk to reach a specific pickup spot, and wait there until the bus can get to you, and you’ll have even less time for them to do it. Doesn’t that defeat the purpose of a safety escort?
Kayla Lemay is the General Assignments Editor at The Comment. Follow her on Twitter @klemay123 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.