More than 20 people have died on LA's Metro bus in 2023: report

According to a report from the LA Times, over 20 people have died this year while riding on the LA Metro, most of them from drug overdoses. 

The issue is raising questions of Metro safety. 

Homelessness, crime and drug use are prominent on the Metro, but now the LA Times is reporting that 22 people died on the Metro from drug overdoses in 2023. 

"This is not the kind of problem that can be solved overnight," said Jennifer Vides, Metro's Chief Customer Experience Officer. 

She said the article failed to mention what Metro is doing with the new reimagined safety program.  The program includes adding 300 unarmed ambassadors, a request for additional safety, enforcing drug prohibition and increasing homeless outreach. 

"Our position is that there shouldn't be open drug use on our system. Our position is that there should be absolutely no assault.s, no crime. on our system," Vides added.   

Metro said the crackdown on drug use by law enforcement has resulted in more than 200 arrests in the month of February.

Meanwhile, Mayor Karen Bass announced Wednesday her appointment of Councilwoman Katy Yaroslavsky to the Metro Board of Directors. 

"Councilwoman Yaroslavsky shares my urgency around confronting Metro’s crises of safety and homelessness head on to save lives and bring people back to LA’s transit system. As Metro expands its network, we will work together to increase equity, sustainability and congestion relief across the County," Bass said in a statement.