Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - australasia, planning - personal safety/crime, ridership - perceptions


Personal safety, public transport, structural equation modelling


Fears about personal safety on public transport can have an important impact on ridership. A range of studies have examined different factors that influence perceptions of crime risk. This study uses structural equation modelling to explore the influences on perceptions of safety on public transport and the impact these perceptions have on ridership using a survey sample from Melbourne, Australia. The largest direct influences on feelings of safety on public transport were trust in others and feeling safe in one’s home or on the street at night. Gender and age are commonly-cited influences in the literature but in this model their influence on feelings of safety was indirect. The total indirect effect of age was larger than the indirect effect of gender. Feelings of safety had a small but significant positive influence on how frequently people used public transport. This was slightly smaller than the negative effect of cars in the household but larger than the negative effect of distance from the city centre.