My name is Nicole Davies, I live in Virginia and I ride the metro to work every day. I am here to comment on the random bag searches that Metro has begun to conduct. I believe that these random searches are a waste of time and money. If someone refuses to have their bag searched, they are just told to leave the station and they get to keep any items that they brought with them. If someone still intended to hurt others, then they could just use the item outside of the station, at another station where they are not doing random searches or they could just come back on another day. These random searches are nothing more than security theatrics. Having the police search every third person at one or two stations on a random date does not make me feel any safer.
Metro needs to use this time and money on preventing terrorism before someone with bad intentions ever enters the metro system. Officials need to use their resources to investigative possible plots. We also need the police to use this time and money to be more visible on the trains, platforms and in parking lots throughout the Metro system.
If these random bag searches continue, then WMATA will see lower ridership numbers. These searches will make peoples commutes longer than they already are. Even a 30 second delay could result in someone missing their bus transfer. If this happens then they may need to wait another 20 minutes for the bus and in freezing cold weather or hot temperatures who wants to wait outside that long? These additional delays could convince a rider to drive instead of taking the Metro.
I believe that these random bag searches should stop immediately and the resources should be re-directed to a more effective method of keeping the Metro System safe. Thank you for your time and attention to this important matter.