- The death of Bamise Ayanwole, the 22-year-old who was reportedly killed inside a BRT vehicle on her way from the Lekki area of Lagos state recently has become an eye-opener for all in the state and beyond to apply caution when using public transport
- Traveling via bus, train, or metro is a convenient and cost-effective way to get around, but encountering crime is still a possibility
- Legit.ng has highlighted ways in which commuters can stay safe while taking public transportation, and avoid 'one chance' buses in the state and beyond
Many rely on using public transportation but it can be risky because it is just like putting your hands in the life of a stranger.
Most reports of kidnapping, one chance, robberies that happen in Nigeria usually take place in public buses, The Nation disclosed.
No one boards a bus to get harmed; the only intention is to get to your destination in ample time.
By being aware of your safety while on buses and even private cabs, you can greatly reduce the risk of attack or assault.
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Here are some safety tips to consider, these tips will help you stay safe while using public transportation;
1. Be aware/alert
Always stay alert no matter how tired you are. Your driver could be just as dangerous as a common criminal. So you need to be very active even as a passenger behind the driver of the moving vehicle.
The most important way to protect yourself on public transportation is to be aware of your surroundings. If you feel uneasy or threatened, change your seat or alert the driver. If needed, get off at the next busy bus-stop.
2. Always inform close persons of your movement
Let someone close to you know your routine or travel schedule. However, two crimes that easily comes to mind when discussing travel itinerary is kidnapping and targeted robbery.
So if you must tell people your travel plans tell them to those who need to know.
3. Whatsapp live location
If you want people to know where you are, turn on live locations in chats where it’s enabled.
The WhatsApp location feature can be used to share one’s location in a WhatsApp message. You should only share your location with people you trust.
On an iPhone: Go to WhatsApp > Account > Privacy > Live Location to see a list of the chats where you’re sharing this information, and remove anywhere you’d like to restrict live location access.
On an Android phone: Go to WhatsApp > Menu > Account > Privacy > Live Location. From there, you can allow WhatsApp to access your device location while using the app or deny access.
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4. Always trust your instincts
If you board public transport and you feel uncomfortable, move away if you can or alight from the bus.
This is why it is very important for one to apply caution, watch closely and use your intuition before entering at the first instance.
Often, their sitting position in the vehicle tells a whole lot about your safety.
5. Avoid vehicles with tinted glasses
This is one way to know you are not wrong before boarding the bus. Vehicles with tinted glasses are not that rampant but when you identify one, it is not a bad idea if you decided not to pay attention to such vehicles.
It is however advisable to avoid public vehicles with tinted glasses, and Sienna cars used for public transport. The Sienna cars do not have back windows that can be opened, be smart.
6. Do not embark on Night journeys
Avoid night journeys but If you must embark on the journey, follow vehicles that are registered, and have a known park/office. Criminals always look for the best time of the day to carry out their activities.
They look for a time when they have a better chance of not getting caught by the security guards or law enforcement officers. Hence they exploit the early hours and late hours of the day. Traveling very early or at night may expose you to dangers.
All of these measures are safety precautions you can adhere to. The tips are endless. All you need is to understand the environment that you're in and be security conscious.
Governor Sanwo-Olu promises justice for Oluwabamise
On his part, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu via Facebook on Monday, March 7, stated that his administration is following all the investigations closely, and will ensure that Oluwabamise gets the justice she deserves.
He assured citizens in the state that the BRT services will remain safe, despite the unfortunate incident.
Part of his statement on the issue read:
"We will therefore leave no stone unturned in the investigations and arrest of everyone found culpable in the kidnap and death of Miss Oluwabamise Ayanwola."