Fare Evasion

 
  viaprojects Train Controller

A passenger gets on at Coniston and does not touch on. Then goes to Woonoona and does not touch off. No barrier gates either side. If they are stopped by transit officer, they have a smart ticket and will tell them to pay at teh end of journy (The full fare will then be payable). Of course , they will not pay at end and simply walk off station.
GCaldwell

under current rules  you will get a fine straight up. no ticket no ride policy.

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  simonl Chief Commissioner

Location: Brisbane
I was wondering if anyone can tell me how teh Opal card will stop fare evasion between suburban stations - (When it is rolled out across teh entire network). A passenger gets on at Coniston and does not touch on.
GCaldwell
Then he is fare evading.
  Airvan99 Junior Train Controller

In addition to a fine for fare evading. What could happen is the card is "touched on" by the person checking the ticket. If no touch off then the default fare is charged.  In some circumstances MiKi operates like that on regional services.
  Watson374 Chief Commissioner

Location: Fully reclined at the pointy end.
In addition to a fine for fare evading. What could happen is the card is "touched on" by the person checking the ticket. If no touch off then the default fare is charged.  In some circumstances MiKi operates like that on regional services.
"Airvan99"
In this case maximum fare is levied. Happened to my card when I let my Mum use it; it failed at first read and the SA let her through, and my card copped a maximum fare when she touched out at her destination. Slightly miffed at the SA not having been briefed on correct Opal handling, but the system did what it was designed to do.

This is just a penalty fare (no touch-out, barring special cases e.g. Manly ferry), not a fine for fare evasion (no card, or no touch-in).
  sydnytrains Chief Commissioner

Location: McDonalds Front counter serving customers
I was wondering if anyone can tell me how teh Opal card will stop fare evasion between suburban stations - (When it is rolled out across teh entire network). A passenger gets on at Coniston and does not touch on. Then goes to Woonoona and does not touch off. No barrier gates either side. If they are stopped by transit officer, they have a smart ticket and will tell them to pay at teh end of journy (The full fare will then be payable). Of course , they will not pay at end and simply walk off station.

So I assume to touch readers on trains? and therefore most midday travel between suburban trains will now be free once Opal rolled out across network?

Cheers

Glenn
"GCaldwell"



Wouldn't TO's be equipped with devices that display the last time a customer touched on with an OPAL? Because here in Perth, TO's have devices that do such with our 'SmartRiders' (TransPerth's version of the OPAL), to crack down on fare evasions.
  thadocta Chief Commissioner

Location: Katoomba
In this case maximum fare is levied. Happened to my card when I let my Mum use it; it failed at first read and the SA let her through, and my card copped a maximum fare when she touched out at her destination. Slightly miffed at the SA not having been briefed on correct Opal handling, but the system did what it was designed to do.

This is just a penalty fare (no touch-out, barring special cases e.g. Manly ferry), not a fine for fare evasion (no card, or no touch-in).
Watson374
Problem with that is there is no incentive to actually touch on, other than avoiding the maximum fare.

Issuing an infringement notice for not touching on (just like now when travelling without a ticket) will make it more desireable to actually touch on. If all you are doing is charging the default fare, then you are reducing the fine from (whatever it is now) to the default fare.

Dave
  Watson374 Chief Commissioner

Location: Fully reclined at the pointy end.
Problem with that is there is no incentive to actually touch on, other than avoiding the maximum fare.

Issuing an infringement notice for not touching on (just like now when travelling without a ticket) will make it more desireable to actually touch on. If all you are doing is charging the default fare, then you are reducing the fine from (whatever it is now) to the default fare.
"thadocta"
Yes and no.

In this case, we actually have two different fines for two different cases of not touching in. If you're not caught, and you touch out, the system cannot levy the correct fare so it levies the maximum fare. However, if the transits nab you en route and their readers (nod to sydnytrains) show that you haven't got a validated Opal card, then you cop the infringement notice.
  Minardiau Train Controller

Do what Deutsch Bahn does and have the guards keep an eye on the passengers who hope on and go and inspect tickets. No ticket you're forced to buy one and get a 80 euro fine. Simple.

Will shortly have a topic about my experiences of living in Germany for 12 months and how it can improve NSWGR Smile
  RatholeTunnel Locomotive Driver

Location: Sydney Area
Current fines are perfectly adequate. I'm doing ok now, but it would be barbaric in our hard times to increase these fines.....would you prefer chain gangs?

Maybe concession for pension and unemployed needs to be more closely aligned, pension tickets next to nothing for a wealthy homeowner paying on some trips only a quarter that of someone outta work who can't even afford 3 proper meals a day unless he's looked after by family or renting cheap like the housing commission.

If were prepared to tolerate extreme poverty maybe we could be less indignant about its consequences.

It's hardly a hanging offence after all.
  sydnytrains Chief Commissioner

Location: McDonalds Front counter serving customers


However, if the transits nab you en route and their readers (nod to sydnytrains) show that you haven't got a validated Opal card, then you cop the infringement notice.
"Watson374"


Ahh that's makes sense. Thanks.
  Watson374 Chief Commissioner

Location: Fully reclined at the pointy end.
Current fines are perfectly adequate. I'm doing ok now, but it would be barbaric in our hard times to increase these fines.....would you prefer chain gangs?
"RatholeTunnel"
I think the fine should go up to $500. Fare evasion is rampant because enforcement is weak and the fine is no longer a real deterrent because fare evaders save enough on fares that copping a fine every few months is still cheaper than paying fares.

Maybe concession for pension and unemployed needs to be more closely aligned, pension tickets next to nothing for a wealthy homeowner paying on some trips only a quarter that of someone outta work who can't even afford 3 proper meals a day unless he's looked after by family or renting cheap like the housing commission.
"RatholeTunnel"
Agreed. We should cancel the PET and require all concession holders to pay half-fare.
  T88 Junior Train Controller

Location: Banned
Only two outcomes in the future.
Privatize or make it free.
Opal will do nothing. It's not compulsory. Tickets are still here to stay for a long time yet. Mobile Opal readers have been talked about for T/Os. But mobile ticket scanners were talked about for transits 13 years ago. Can't see a reader being useful on a packed train in peak hour.
Don't tag on, Don't tag off!
Ride for free! Redesigning the ticket gates ain't going to happen due to fire and evac procedures.
Perhaps we should look at the quality of customers using the network and why they use it.
1% are environmentalist.
79% cost and convience.
20% unemployed and blatant thieves.
  Watson374 Chief Commissioner

Location: Fully reclined at the pointy end.
Only two outcomes in the future.
Privatize or make it free.
Opal will do nothing. It's not compulsory. Tickets are still here to stay for a long time yet. Mobile Opal readers have been talked about for T/Os. But mobile ticket scanners were talked about for transits 13 years ago. Can't see a reader being useful on a packed train in peak hour.
Don't tag on, Don't tag off!
Ride for free! Redesigning the ticket gates ain't going to happen due to fire and evac procedures.
Perhaps we should look at the quality of customers using the network and why they use it.
1% are environmentalist.
79% cost and convience.
20% unemployed and blatant thieves.
"T88"
Get out. Rolling Eyes
  T88 Junior Train Controller

Location: Banned
Let me clarify my post. Fixed readers on trains are just dumb.
Accessing the unit in a peak hour crush is a big hassle.
What is the crux of fare evasion?
Loss of revenue! Thieves will always be thieves. Skum still needs to get around. With privatization they will protect the income as a priotry. The Sydney network has never turned a profit.
If the gov wants to get in the black the only way that will happen is to increase fares and reduce operating costs. A good example is the UK. I'm all for more T/Os. They do a great job and pay for themselves. But you got to realize that a small percentage of skum never pay the fines and are repeat offenders.
The current T/Os are powerless. A fare evader just needs to walk away.
Meanwhile how many transit officers are now getting paid to sit in the vege patch? Fare evasion is here to stay. Nothing will change. Ultimately the network needs more real police or enforcers.
  jcouch Assistant Commissioner

Location: Asleep on a commuter train
Certainly none of the sitting around at Campbelltown in the mornings. They're intercepting all the passengers after they get off the Southern Highlands trains that arrive on P4 and heading over to P2 for the city services. They've been doing a roaring trade each morning too. Typically 6-7 on the platform and they have a good 10+ "customers" lined up.  They or cops are regularly also at Wolli Creek grabbing people as they swap between illawarra and East hills platforms. Also seem to do a pretty good business.
  Watson374 Chief Commissioner

Location: Fully reclined at the pointy end.
Let me clarify my post. Fixed readers on trains are just dumb.
Accessing the unit in a peak hour crush is a big hassle.
What is the crux of fare evasion?
"T88"
Who said anything about fixed readers? T/Os are to walk around with handheld readers, and they can check cards at random by walking around platforms, going through trains - anywhere!

Loss of revenue! Thieves will always be thieves. Skum still needs to get around. With privatization they will protect the income as a priotry. The Sydney network has never turned a profit.
If the gov wants to get in the black the only way that will happen is to increase fares and reduce operating costs. A good example is the UK. I'm all for more T/Os. They do a great job and pay for themselves. But you got to realize that a small percentage of skum never pay the fines and are repeat offenders.
The current T/Os are powerless. A fare evader just needs to walk away.
Meanwhile how many transit officers are now getting paid to sit in the vege patch? Fare evasion is here to stay. Nothing will change. Ultimately the network needs more real police or enforcers.
"T88"
I agree in principle that we need to beat fare evasion - literally. Jack the fines up. Hell, I swear there was a city which introduced commission-based revenue protection on its metropolitan railways, which resulted in the hilarious situation of T/Os going completely bananas Zealot-rushing fare evaders to increase their bonus (and that of their employer, which held the operating contract).

It was politically unsavoury and had to be softened, which was a real shame. I really think there is a need to be double-faced - print endless propaganda about a better network to the public, and then turn around and beat senseless everything that stops it from being that better network.
  T88 Junior Train Controller

Location: Banned
Someone else mentioned fixed readers on trains earlier in the thread. (I can't use quote on iPhone.) either that or I got cross threaded. Me bad.
Ultimately no figures are available in regards to fare evaders. Some lines have honest customers, others don't. The only statistics available are ticket sales and offenders that are caught. Funny enough all the government cares about are SEGS.
Single Entry tickets that are validated thru gates. Mind you one person puts a ticket in the wide gate and 100 people walk thru. Parramatta is a good example. Now throw into the equation all the stations that don't have gates and I estimate 30% of passengers don't buy tickets.
That's a huge amount of money lost.
Debt recovery thru OSR is a joke. If passengers can't honestly afford to buy a ticket, they can't afford to pay a fine. It's a visious circle. Your car rego or drivers license gets suspended thru fine default. But most fare evaders are using public transport because they don't have any other means of transport. What happens if a fare evader never held a drivers license? Nothing!
You can't go to jail for fine defaults.
It's only a matter of time till wages are garnished thru taxation to collect fines. But if you are on the dole that equates to $5 a week.
If you come undone for other crimes and are locked up, the fines are worked off in days while in the clink.

The UK has a incentive plan to pay fines on time. You get a 20% discount if the fine is paid within 21 days from memory.
I think Sydney Trains needs a harsh marketing campaign warning fare evaders about the consequences of not buying a ticket. Back in the late 80s a poster featured a dinosaur eating a fare evader. That poster was very successful in reducing the numbers. The poster is a collectors item now and worth a fortune. Wish I had one framed on the wall in my man cave!
  GCaldwell Beginner

Wouldn't TO's be equipped with devices that display the last time a customer touched on with an OPAL? Because here in Perth, TO's have devices that do such with our 'SmartRiders' (TransPerth's version of the OPAL), to crack down on fare evasions.
sydnytrains
The FAQ section of he Opal website refers to it being OK if you do not tag on or tag off as the max fare will eb charged. It does not refer to being fined en route. So it is perhaps a secodnary measure I presume. They will roll it our with gradual increase in enforcement...?
  T88 Junior Train Controller

Location: Banned
Transport Officers are equipped with Opal card readers. They are about the size of a mobile phone.
Not tagging on and off in one trip?
How will it charge the max fare?
Answer = it can't.
Getting caught in a paid area and without following the proper procedure of tagging on?
Answer = $200 fine.
  T88 Junior Train Controller

Location: Banned
Random thought. I
Insert a smart chip on all seniors or pension cards.
Tag on, Tag off!
Automatically deduct from pension every fortnight. No need for opal and stuffing around online to register and link bank account.
  T88 Junior Train Controller

Location: Banned
Random thought.
Insert a smart chip on all seniors or pension cards.
Tag on, Tag off!
Automatically deduct from pension every fortnight. No need for opal and stuffing around online to register and link bank account.
  clrks Locomotive Fireman

You know, if the maximum fare is automatically deducted when someone touches on at a station but doesn't touch off when they arrive, there is going to be a lot of whinging to the media.

It's quite clear that some people may be absent-minded or for some other reason forget to touch off when they arrive at their destination, with no intention for fare evasion.

I predict this will cause quite a lot of complaints. Now clearly everyone should have the responsibility of touching on and off but this scenario is bound to arise.

The smart card system for some rail systems in the world like in Hong Kong have almost no possibility for this situation arising, because there are barriers at all stations, so one basically cannot ever forget to tap on and tap off.
  simonl Chief Commissioner

Location: Brisbane
The FAQ section of he Opal website refers to it being OK if you do not tag on or tag off as the max fare will eb charged. It does not refer to being fined en route. So it is perhaps a secodnary measure I presume. They will roll it our with gradual increase in enforcement...?
GCaldwell
I don't think it says that it's OK not to tag on.  I take it you're thinking of this bit:
"

Yes, you always need to tap on and tap off, even if the gates are open. If you don’t, the system will assume you travelled the maximum distance for that transport mode, and you will incur a default fare: $7.00 for ferries or $8.10 for trains during peak times* (or $5.67 during off-peak times).

Default fares (incurred if you forget to tap on or tap off) do not count towards the Weekly Travel Reward. However, default fares do count towards the Daily Travel Cap.

*7.00am-9.00am and 4.00pm-6.30pm weekdays - (only applies to travel by train).
"Obviously, if you neither tag on or off you get a fare of zero.

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