Fare evasion costing Metrolinx about $15M in lost revenue: report
Published Friday, May 10, 2019 6:59PM EDT Last Updated Friday, May 10, 2019 9:01PM EDT
Metrolinx will be increasing the number of their fare inspectors in an attempt to help curb fare evasion.
In a report that will be presented to Metrolinx’s board of directors next week, the transit agency called their fare inspection strategy “ineffective.”
“Previous counts led us to believe our fare evasion rate was closer to 1.1 (per cent). A more recent and accurate campaign, whereby we conducted full train inspections over a six-month period, revealed that the evasion rate is approximately 3 (per cent),” the report read.
The fare evasion is estimated to have resulted in $15 million in lost revenue.
Speaking with CTV News Toronto on Friday, Bill Grodzinski, the director of transit safety at Metrolinx, said that the majority of customers are paying their fares.
“The ones that are cheating the system, and it is cheating, are a combination of those that are doing it deliberately and those that are running late for a train,” Grodzinski said. “Either way, what it does is it costs the customers that are paying $15 million. That’s $15 million that we can’t put back into our business.”
Metrolinx will add 12 new full-time officers to its revenue protection team, bringing the total number of full-time officers to 32. There are also eight part-time revenue protection officers currently employed at Metrolinx.
The new officers are expected to start on June 1, Metrolinx said.
Grodzinski also said that Metrolinx will be taking as zero-tolerance approach to fare inspection.
“That’s our goal—to make sure everyone pays,” he said. “We would like to recover every single nickel and put it back into our service but the bottom line is that as long as people are cheating, there will be some revenue leakage.”
Commuters caught not paying their fare will face a $100 fine.