Port Authority Police and security officers are dedicated to serve and protect Port Authority riders.
To contact Port Authority Police, call 412-255-1385.
History of the Port Authority Police
The Port Authority Police and Security Services Department was organized in 1968 to oversee the security and protection of Port Authority riders, employees and facilities. Empowered by state law and commissioned by the Governor, Port Authority police officers have jurisdiction on and adjacent to Port Authority property as well as throughout the Commonwealth when in pursuit of Port Authority business.
The responsibility to police Port Authority services – which operate throughout Allegheny County 365 days a year – creates unique challenges and demands a force that is professionally trained and knowledgeable on all law enforcement matters.
Stephen McCauley became Port Authority police chief in November 2006 following 20 years of service. During his tenure, the department established an Emergency Services Unit designed to respond to critical incidents involving Port Authority. Twelve officers are trained and equipped to deal with scenarios such as chemical leaks, hostage situations and an active shooter aboard a bus or light rail vehicle.
Under Chief McCauley, the department added computer and video forensics specialists with extensive knowledge and advanced training. The department currently has 40 police officers and 10 security guards while operating a fleet of marked and unmarked police vehicles.
More than half of the department has a college background, and many officers regularly attend local colleges and universities as well as police in-service classes in Allegheny County and throughout the country.
The Port Authority Police Station is located at 1500 Martin Luther King, Jr. East Busway in Downtown Pittsburgh and is the control center for all law enforcement activities related to Port Authority operations. These include:
- Uniformed foot patrol of the subway and other Port Authority facilities
- Patrols on Port Authority's busways and properties throughout Allegheny County in marked and unmarked vehicles
- Accident investigations
- Undercover surveillance
- Internal investigations
- Traffic and crowd control
- Neighborhood patrols along bus routes
Traffic Investigations Unit
The Port Authority Police includes a Traffic Investigation Unit that responds to major accidents involving Port Authority vehicles. Three officers are trained as Accident Reconstructionists, and other officers have received Basic and Advanced Accident Investigation Training. Officers regularly attend classes sponsored by the Traffic Institute for Police Service and the Federal Transit Administration. The Traffic Unit operates three vehicles equipped with the necessary tools to conduct an on-scene investigation.
In 1997, Port Authority Police began a plainclothes detail in Downtown Pittsburgh to combat street crime. This detail is coordinated by the unit's Detective Sergeant, who is responsible for receiving and following up on complaints by bus/T operators and riders using plainclothes officers. Port Authority officers patrol Downtown Pittsburgh for criminal activity at bus stops and subway stations.
Port Authority has K-9 officers that are trained in the detection of explosives and work alongside veteran Port Authority Police officers. The first unit began routine patrols throughout the system in June 2004. Each specially trained dog completes a seven-week training course in bomb detection and patrol, and continues training for several days each month.