Armed security staff will remain on OC Transpo routes for at least another five years, following a vote by the Ottawa Police Services Board Monday night.

The board voted in favour of continuing the OC Transpo special constable program until July 2013.

The program, which upgraded security guards to special police constables in March 2007, was credited in May for reducing crime on Ottawa's transit system by 32 per cent.

The special constable program was put in place following the murder of 23-year-old Michael Oatway who was stabbed while riding an OC Transpo bus in September 2006.

Special constables have some police powers and have the authority to make arrests, issue tickets and run security checks. They carry handcuffs, batons, pepper spray and badges.