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The New Hampshire

UNH Mobile App to expand with increased access to Safe Rides

Joy Kotee, Contributing Writer

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Student complaints about the current state of Safe Rides has encouraged the Transportation Services’ program to create a new and more accessible software available on the UNH Mobile App.

According to previous student body president, Jonathan Dean, Safe Rides is a UNH bus system that offers students safe rides home on Fridays and Saturdays. Currently, students must call Safe Rides to request their service, which is problematic when multiple people call simultaneously and their calls are not answered.

“The intent of Safe Rides is to provide a safe ride home for students that drive to a party,” Transit Manager Beverly Clay said. “It is not intended as a shuttle to drive people to parties.”

Safe Rides has faced a problem that the people of Transit noticed to try to resolve, and to let the Informational Technology (IT) department become aware of it.

“I called one time and they didn’t answer me,” freshman Jaylene Velasquez said. “It was disappointing because I didn’t have a ride and I was counting on them.”

About a year ago, Transportation Services approached the IT department to put together a software so that the current UNH Mobile App can be expanded and someone in need of a ride could contact a Safe Ride without having to communicate directly with an individual, according to Campus Structure Chairperson Zachary Dumont. The resolution, referred to as resolution R33 to increase access to safe rides, was passed by Student Senate on April 23 and states that the student body stands behind Transportation Services and the IT department in their decision.

“We are going to ask IT if they could make this their main priority to get this out sometime during the last week of August,” Dumont said. “If IT is unable to deliver by fall 2017, the student body stands behind transportation looking for third party software.”

Various UNH students have different opinions on the resolution to increase access to safe rides.

“They do need to have more Safe Rides because a lot of the times when [the rides] don’t come, it’s because they have so many people,” sophomore Amanda D’Arezzo said.

However, although there appears to be a consensus that the app would be helpful, some students feel it has the potential to be abused.

According to chemical engineering major Jake Ladipo, although he has never used Safe Rides, he believes that the app would be useful, “but at the same time I feel like people would definitely abuse it more. People don’t like spending money on Uber and would rather use Safe Rides.”

“If there is an app for Safe Rides, I would definitely open it up and use it, just like an Uber,” sophomore Kelsey Koloski said.

The impending addition of Safe Rides to the UNH Mobile App has not yet been given a date of implementation.

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The independent student newspaper of the University of New Hampshire since 1911
UNH Mobile App to expand with increased access to Safe Rides