Atlanta Installing Urine Detectors in Train Station Elevators

PHOTO: Atlanta plans to keep its train stations clean by installing urine detectors along elevator floors.

Subway stations have a distinct smell, but some cities have it worse than others. Atlanta's public transit authority MARTA may be one of the worst, as several of its citizens have said that many of the city's train station elevators smell like Porta Potties.

But Tom Beebe, MARTA's director of elevators and escalators, plans to install some new technology that catches rogue urinaters in the act.

One of the elevators at an Atlanta train station was outfitted with a urine detection device, or UDD. The device consists of several sensors lining the elevator floor.

"If somebody was to urinate in here, there's going to be a splash factor," Beebe told Atlanta's WSB-TV, an ABC News affiliate.

The splash is picked up by the UDD and then triggers an alarm that has MARTA police officers at the elevator in seconds.

The UDD is only in one of the train station elevators. But since the UDD's installation, WSB-TV reported, urine problems have significantly dropped for the station. The UDDs will be making their way to other elevators starting next month, with the ultimate goal of arming each of the 111 station elevators with the device. Each UDD costs MARTA $10,000.

But MARTA officials aren't putting all their eggs in the UDD basket. They also plan to install better lighting and security cameras in the elevators, as well as reopen restrooms in some of the other stations.

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