Women Are Downloading Free App WalkSafe That Reveals The Most Dangerous Places To Walk
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A free safety app called WalkSafe has attracted more than 300,000 downloads within a week in the wake of Sarah Everard's disappearance and death.
It has become the number one free app on Apple's iOS store and entered the top 10 on the Android app store.
The app includes a map of previously reported incidents nearby that makes users aware of any potential 'danger zones' so that they can then plan a safer route home.
In addition to a map of recent incidents, the app allows users to tap the screen every so often while walking home - if there are no taps for a while, it alerts the user's emergency contacts immediately.
This feature, known as 'TapSafe', can be enabled to ensure the user's emergency contacts are sent the user's location if they stop tapping their phone for more than a certain period of time.
The colours on TapSafe change depending on the time of day, allowing users to engage with the app discreetly which is particularly useful when walking alone at night.
They can also check in with others and let the app send an automatic notification to friends when they have reached their destination. This is known as the 'HomeSafe' feature, which gives users the chance to set their estimated time of arrival at home.
The app will send their location to emergency contacts if users do not complete their journey within that time.
Speaking to Mail Online, the app's co-founder Emma Kay explained that WalkSafe only had 2,000 downloads before Sarah's disappearance, which led to further debate about gender violence and vigils.
Emma's own experiences of being followed and feeling unsafe inspired the creation of the app.
"There have been instances in the past of myself, dating back from a young age - I'm talking schoolgirl age - where you felt nervous, you've been scared," she said.
"I've been followed, I've had someone, a stranger in the street put his hand up my skirt, I've been in those sorts of situations and it does start young."
Wayne Couzens, a 48-year-old serving Met police officer was charged with murdering Sarah, 33, earlier this month after she vanished when walking home from a friend's house in Clapham, London.
A plea hearing for Wayne has been scheduled to take place on 9th July, with any upcoming trial thought to take place from 25th October.
Should a trial take place, a verdict may not be reached until November at the earliest.
The news comes after it was reported that Sarah's body is to be released to her family ahead of her funeral, following a second post-mortem.
Sarah's death has prompted an outpouring of anger and grief from women, sparking protests in London demanding women's safety to be taken more seriously, with tougher punishments for crimes directed at women.