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Via Garibaldi 8

Farebeating Crackdown Begins...

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8 hours ago, QM1to6Ave said:

I'm surprised the TBTA cops' union didn't put up a fight about this. I didn't know they had jurisdiction outside of bridges and tunnels. 

TBTA seems to be a pretty sweet gig...sit in the car all day by the entrance to the tunnel and do nothing. Almost as hard working as the court officers that watch movies in the jury duty room all day ;)

If I were a Bridge and Tunnel officer and needed to be reassigned, I'd rather sit on the QM1, QM5 or Q46 and pick out 'violators' than to be assigned to housing patrol.

 

7 hours ago, Future ENY OP said:

Yeh.. sweet job until you have to pull someone over.

They tend to do traffic stops on the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel and Queens Midtown Tunnel...

Tailgating infractions (most serious), speeding in/out of tunnel, and in the past E-Z pass violations

Let's not forget about the constant surveillance taking place. According to Gov Cuomo, each motorist crossing an MTA Bridge/Tunnel is having their photo taken and being observed by the police in one of their patrol cars. Supposedly omnipresent background checks are being performed every time one uses an MTA bridge or tunnel.

NYP article from 2018 https://nypost.com/2018/07/20/inside-cuomos-plan-to-have-your-face-scanned-at-nyc-toll-plazas/

Gothamist opinion from April 2019 https://www.gothamgazette.com/opinion/8450-take-down-cuomo-s-creeping-cameras

 

54 minutes ago, Lawrence St said:

Don't "READ ERROR" and "INSUFFICIENT FUNDS" make different beeps? I know for a fact insufficient funds make a click noise after the beep which is the coin acceptance activating.

That's what I thought. But according to @Via Garibaldi 8, the beeps are similar (see post #17). I'm glad I'm not the only one who thought of this. Now it comes down to one having to argue the type of chime / beep that an officer heard in front of an admin law judge. (yeah, I like the Hudson County vans fare collection system much better.....ditto the Lyft fare collection system).

 

19 minutes ago, B35 via Church said:

Personally, I think it's a chicken shit move to target those that are more likely to pay & then hit those with a metrocard issue with a farebeating charge, as some sort of a "gotcha" moment..... Target the sons of bitches that are deliberately skipping out of the fare on these local buses.

This is all about revenue collection. The MTA is always claiming broke. This is one way to close the budget. It's kind of like having speed cameras - a speed bump will actually slow most motorists down the moment they cross the speed bump, whereas the speed cameras will always produce revenue, but may not actually slow some motorists down until after the speeding ticket is mailed to their house.

The way I see it, a law abiding commuter may now opt to keep a back-up MetroCard with them so as to avoid a possible summons (or any other issues with law enforcement), whereas the habitual fare evaders may continue to game the system one way or another.

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1 hour ago, Lawrence St said:

Don't "READ ERROR" and "INSUFFICIENT FUNDS" make different beeps? I know for a fact insufficient funds make a click noise after the beep which is the coin acceptance activating.

The beep sounds the same. The click noise I recall is the driver resetting the farebox to take another Metrocard.

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Our Genfare fareboxes do a single beep when fare has been paid (bills/coins), an annoying long buzz when the bill collector spits out a bill it couldn't read, and voice-notifications. So let's say your Metrocard gets dipped and only has $1.75 on it, it would pop the card and say, "Please pay amount shown", and if you put the additional $1.00 in, the confirmation beep would be heard (fare has been paid). If you use some sort of pass, after dipping it says, "Fare deducted." Put a coin in that was rejected, "Coin not valid." On SMART, if you paid over the fare amount (like with a $5 or $10), a change-card would be issued with the balance, and "Your change is encoded on card." And until recently, if you paid for a transfer, SMART buses used to say, "Please take transfer."

Not sure if the voice-command is part of ADA, but if the TAB office is going to be over-run with angry customers with summonses for malfunctioning Metrocards (based on ASS-umptions of fare enforcers), it should be something added. (And I'm sure the ancient MTA fareboxes have that capability -- they just probably have to ask "customer support" at Genfare.)

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44 minutes ago, Uncle Floyd Fan said:

This is all about revenue collection. The MTA is always claiming broke. This is one way to close the budget. It's kind of like having speed cameras - a speed bump will actually slow most motorists down the moment they cross the speed bump, whereas the speed cameras will always produce revenue, but may not actually slow some motorists down until after the speeding ticket is mailed to their house.

The way I see it, a law abiding commuter may now opt to keep a back-up MetroCard with them so as to avoid a possible summons (or any other issues with law enforcement), whereas the habitual fare evaders may continue to game the system one way or another.

The point of all this being about revenue collection is obvious..... Nobody wants to hear/read any cries of how broke the MTA is, when they grossly mismanage funds.....

Those with metrocard problems should not be pigeonholed as criminals of theft of services.... It's sucker shit, no matter how it's sliced.... To have to resort to carrying back-up cards (giving the MTA even more money) to lessen the chances of possessing a faulty card{s) is ludicrous.....

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30 minutes ago, Lil 57 said:

Here's a SI Live article about someone being wrongly accused of not paying on an expess bus.

SILive.com: MTA crackdown: Express bus rider claims he was unjustly accused of fare evasion.
https://www.silive.com/news/2019/07/mta-crackdown-express-bus-rider-claims-he-was-unjustly-accused-of-fare-evasion.html

As soon as I read about this fare enforcement blitz, I knew something like this was gonna happen

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This is getting pretty serious. SIM's today, QM's tomorrow. We should write / call our elected officials and ask them to put a stop to this improper and predatory pursuit of innocent, law-abiding citizens.

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Perhaps this revised form letter can be sent to our elected officials:

 

Dear Honorable ((insert name of elected or appointed official here)):

It has come to my attention in the media that the MTA and local law enforcement are erroneously ticketing passengers for presumed fare evasion. Innocent fare-paying passengers are receiving a summons even though their MetroCard has been proven to be valid. PLEASE see the link below which highlights the incorrect ticketing of law abiding commuters. While I understand the need to enforce fare evasion laws, it is troublesome and immoral for innocent people to profiled and ticketed when they have not done anything wrong, AND when it has been proven that the fare HAS been paid.

https://www.silive.com/news/2019/07/mta-crackdown-express-bus-rider-claims-he-was-unjustly-accused-of-fare-evasion.html

I hope you can call on our law enforcement officials to stop this virtually unconstitutional practice.

 

Sincerely,

 

((Insert your name and contact info here))

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For that matter, would it be worth reaching out to the audio/video media (1010 WINS, 880, NY1, etc) and asking them to trail the B&T crew? Sometimes a camera in an authorities face could stem the tide.

 

It's reasons like this that I don't think OMNY will fix the problems being encountered. All it will do is track us. One cannot prove their innocence to their captors.

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UPDATE - On July 1, I reached out to a few elected officials regarding the need to retain Andy Byford. Today, I heard back from a representative of Barry Grodenchik (we actually spoke on the phone for a couple of minutes, just after I wrote the post above).

During my call with Mr. Grodenchik's representative, I highlighted the concerns I have regarding the predatory nature with which innocent commuters are improperly receiving summonses  due to false claims of fare evasion on the buses. I then included the link from the SI Advance outlining how this predatory practice takes place.

Hopefully, if enough of us speak up to our elected officials, and they see how members of the public are being mistreated, then maybe this predatory practice will cease.

Only actual fare evaders should receive a summons, not innocent commuters caught up in a game of 'gotcha'.

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There were two plainclothes NYPD cops ticketing farebeaters at 59th street (6) today...one of them was the fattest cop I've ever seen, and they both had their radios set to a super loud volume and their badges hanging around their necks, so they weren't exactly blending into the background LOL. I dunno why they didn't just have them in uniform.

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21 minutes ago, QM1to6Ave said:

There were two plainclothes NYPD cops ticketing farebeaters at 59th street (6) today...one of them was the fattest cop I've ever seen, and they both had their radios set to a super loud volume and their badges hanging around their necks, so they weren't exactly blending into the background LOL. I dunno why they didn't just have them in uniform.

Maybe they were desk cops who aren't used to being outside...

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20 hours ago, QM1to6Ave said:

There were two plainclothes NYPD cops ticketing farebeaters at 59th street (6) today...one of them was the fattest cop I've ever seen, and they both had their radios set to a super loud volume and their badges hanging around their necks, so they weren't exactly blending into the background LOL. I dunno why they didn't just have them in uniform.

SMFH....

Can't even go about performing covert operations right.

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There are new "Dont hold the gate open" signs being put up on the emergency exits...they really are starting to crack down on this.

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I was on a Brownsville bound B35 last week and when the bus got to Flatbush Ave a whole bunch of people entered in through the rear doors. I was never so shocked to see carelessly a crowd people just hopped on. 
I was also just on a Spring Creek bound B20 last Thursday and again witnessed tons of people boarding through the back at Broadway Junction. I was honestly foolish to think that having a the NYPD Transit precinct police located right in the station would deter people from farebeating.

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1 hour ago, NewFlyer 230 said:

I was on a Brownsville bound B35 last week and when the bus got to Flatbush Ave a whole bunch of people entered in through the rear doors. I was never so shocked to see carelessly a crowd people just hopped on.....

Yeah, travel about a mile east & it gets significantly worse.... See it everyday.

1 hour ago, NewFlyer 230 said:

I was also just on a Spring Creek bound B20 last Thursday and again witnessed tons of people boarding through the back at Broadway Junction. I was honestly foolish to think that having a the NYPD Transit precinct police located right in the station would deter people from farebeating.

Most those cops never leave the facility enough to even see the buses themselves, let alone who's boarding them in what manner....

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12 hours ago, NewFlyer 230 said:

I was on a Brownsville bound B35 last week and when the bus got to Flatbush Ave a whole bunch of people entered in through the rear doors. I was never so shocked to see carelessly a crowd people just hopped on. 
I was also just on a Spring Creek bound B20 last Thursday and again witnessed tons of people boarding through the back at Broadway Junction. I was honestly foolish to think that having a the NYPD Transit precinct police located right in the station would deter people from farebeating.

Since the rear door boarding is the biggest problem -- somehow missed by all the "smart" people getting paychecks at not only the MTA, but the NYPD/MTAPD -- simplest solution at this point is to actually put two uniforms on the buses to "pop-out" ahead of the crowd from the rear door(s) and basically play sentry duty. Then re-board and go on down the route.

Could also be like the DDOT Transit Police from the DPD and have a cruiser actually following the bus along the route. Watch for the crowds, chirp the siren at a stop, put the overheads on, pop out and start taking names. Dashcam/bodycam footage available too.

Naturally the fareboxes would go bonkers with all the extra Metrocard scans, and the MTA number-crunchers would be scratching their heads when looking at those reports.

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2 hours ago, Nova Fly Guy said:

More wasted resources not aimed at the real issue when will they learn SMDH.

It’s like TSA - it’s the appearance of doing something meaningful so 1) folks shut up/get off their backs and 2) was easier and cheaper than doing something comprehensively better.

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Last night seen 4 people board the Bx15 in Harlem without paying the fare. I’m trying to figure out where is the enforcement here. SMFH 

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9 hours ago, Deucey said:

It’s like TSA - it’s the appearance of doing something meaningful so 1) folks shut up/get off their backs and 2) was easier and cheaper than doing something comprehensively better.

If you had good service or actually showed effort people would pay the fare. If I’m late 3 out of 5 days I work because of a lackluster system I would be reluctant to pay. Not saying it’s right I’m just looking at the real issue at hand.

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8 hours ago, Deucey said:

It’s like TSA - it’s the appearance of doing something meaningful so 1) folks shut up/get off their backs and 2) was easier and cheaper than doing something comprehensively better.

In this case, however, it's like trying to staunch a sliced carotid artery with a Band-Aid -- you've done something, at least, but the patient's going to die anyway.

1 hour ago, Future ENY OP said:

Last night seen 4 people board the Bx15 in Harlem without paying the fare. I’m trying to figure out where is the enforcement here. SMFH 

So, let's point to the obvious: the neighborhood. Now before any of you want to start doing an AOC, let's agree that in certain areas crime does actually occur more (and is tolerated) because of lacking police presence. But farebeating has become so "accepted" that I'd even venture a guess that 4 people could do the same thing up in @Via Garibaldi 8's stomping grounds, and be residents to boot. IIRC, when this "crackdown" began, the Post had an article about cops "securing" exit gates at a couple subway stations, and talked to a few peeps. One of which freely admitted he farebeat -- and he wasn't someone "scraping by," trying to eke-out $2.75 from a meager hourly paycheck: he was obviously someone "of means" outfitted in a nice suit and tie.

This opinion piece in the Post today talks exactly of that type of scenario that was afflicting BART. Quite honestly, BART's focus on farebeating -- while it had become a problem -- is also misplaced when the major, glaring problem affecting it is also due to the excessive "permissiveness" of San Francisco itself: its homelessness and drug-use coddling policies. Many BART station areas are almost "no-go" zones because of this. (And this "permissiveness" has led to roaring success of the "Where's the Poop?" app, the developers of which might have done it for just shits-and-giggles, but even with their finger-in-the-eye shaming of San Francisco officials, nothing's changed.)

BART got away with using deterrence, by using "civilian" employees in orange vests primarily, with police as back-up. Police did get overtime, but when offset by not only the fines collected but also the calls-for-assistance not generated due to stations becoming more "orderly"/law-abiding, as well as the increased fares collected, things became better.

The writer references to San Francisco using the NYC-originated "Broken Windows" practices to tackle their farebeating problem. Since NYC has abandoned that approach, and MTA farebeating has become an almost unstoppable monster (due to permissiveness), it's time for a new approach: the Board-Up-the-Windows policy. There needs to be a definite police presence through both uniform and plainclothes, and the key being: criminals need to be prosecuted and those cases presented very publicly. That will reinforce the idea that you will be caught and prosecuted, so that even someone who regularly does pay fare, if they even briefly entertain the notion that "I'm gonna skip paying, I'm probably not gonna be caught", it'll be something they regret.

By doing exactly what I said before (yeah, the fareboxes overheating due to extra Metrocard dips and the eggheads being boggled was an injection of humor): Uniforms on the buses at the back doors exiting before the customers and acting as sentries, police cruisers following buses and catching people in the act at bus stops, sting operations like what they do with hookers and johns using the zip-cuffs and hauling farebeaters off to a booking area at subway stations-- major parts of Board-Up-the-Windows.

Get the MTA to put on the ad-rails of the buses and subways posters of "$2.75 or $100: Pay now or pay later (with a criminal record)" as well as on the bus screens, make announced temporary service cuts on a rotating basis (I know, that does actually happen through bus bunching, MIAs, and the Delays/Service Changes of the subways already) saying "This is what happens when people don't pay fare. Want more of it?" I know that might sound pretty off-the-wall/extreme, but many cities announce via the radio/TV when and where they're setting up drunk-driving checkpoints -- and they STILL catch plenty of people.

Point is, farebeating has gotten to an uncontrollable apex. Nobody, practically, has any "fear" of any consequences due to all the permissiveness that's allowed (remember, good ole Cy Vance says he's not going after them in Manhattan -- and he's supposed to be enforcing the laws that are on the books). Hell, you can now pee practically on a cop's shoe, re-zip and go about your day.

The windows are now gone and the squatters live there. Time to board up the holes, eradicate the problem, then put new ones in and make sure they're not re-broken.

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24 minutes ago, Nova Fly Guy said:

If you had good service or actually showed effort people would pay the fare. If I’m late 3 out of 5 days I work because of a lackluster system I would be reluctant to pay. Not saying it’s right I’m just looking at the real issue at hand.

OK, so I guess you also shoplift from stores, right? "I don't think that should be $8.00! I buy enough stuff from here regularly, I'm entitled to take this because this price is just unfair." Except that people who actually think that have MADE that product carry that $8.00 price tag because of people stealing. See it for real: Walk into a Walgreens/Duane Reade -- "corporate" policy lets anyone steal and walk away scot-free, while prices get raised/stores closed -- and everyone else pays the higher prices. From January 2018 in Manhattan:

Quote

An employee at the drugstore told The Post that the shampoo-petrator is a “regular” there.

“Everybody knows him,” said the worker, who identified herself as Tracey C., 26.

“He comes in once or twice a week and steals anything. If it’s not shampoo, it’s Red Bull,” she said.

“We’re not allowed to keep him out, and we’re not allowed to stop him,” she said.

So if you can't get proper service and you're late in the future because the MTA cuts service, you only have yourself to blame.

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4 hours ago, DetSMART45 said:

OK, so I guess you also shoplift from stores, right? "I don't think that should be $8.00! I buy enough stuff from here regularly, I'm entitled to take this because this price is just unfair." Except that people who actually think that have MADE that product carry that $8.00 price tag because of people stealing. See it for real: Walk into a Walgreens/Duane Reade -- "corporate" policy lets anyone steal and walk away scot-free, while prices get raised/stores closed -- and everyone else pays the higher prices. From January 2018 in Manhattan:

So if you can't get proper service and you're late in the future because the MTA cuts service, you only have yourself to blame.

You beat me to the punch with your response. Where I come from a lowlife thief is a lowlife thief no matter how one tries to rationalize it. Maybe we should emulate the Saudi or the Singapore methods of punishing the perps. Make an example of a few people and I bet the problem subsides.  Just a thought.  Carry on. 

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5 hours ago, DetSMART45 said:

So, let's point to the obvious: the neighborhood. Now before any of you want to start doing an AOC, let's agree that in certain areas crime does actually occur more (and is tolerated) because of lacking police presence. But farebeating has become so "accepted" that I'd even venture a guess that 4 people could do the same thing up in @Via Garibaldi 8's stomping grounds, and be residents to boot.

I don't think it's become that bad... Yet... What I have seen (and continue to see) is when there is farebeating in my neighborhood, it's usually school kids that likely are playing hooky trying to get back home wherever they live without paying. Several weeks ago, I was waiting for the express bus.  Bx10 rolls up to the stop. Young high schooler gets on and tries to give some story. Driver wouldn't let him go.  He got off and waited for the next bus. Not sure what happened, as my express bus came by the time another Bx10 came into the stop. 

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6 hours ago, Trainmaster5 said:

You beat me to the punch with your response. Where I come from a lowlife thief is a lowlife thief no matter how one tries to rationalize it. Maybe we should emulate the Saudi or the Singapore methods of punishing the perps. Make an example of a few people and I bet the problem subsides.  Just a thought.  Carry on. 

Brace yourself, fellas, truth incoming without a filter ....

TBH, I would have let this slide, because while I was proofing/finishing my "diatribe" the notification of "Oh, someone has a response" came in. But then after my response posted, I see this panty-ass bullshit coming through .... something snapped. And quite honestly, there SHOULD HAVE BEEN a whole lot more "snaps" similar to mine upon reading that, and yet everyone kinda walked the other way, like how people see someone puke on the floor but then act like "I didn't see that, sucks to be someone who skids on it."

See any "upvotes" or other giggly symbols to my response (or the long one regarding farebeating)? BUT, there's plenty of "nodding heads" out there -- however, COMPLACENCY rules the day.

Guys, I don't have any axe to grind in anything I comment on here. It's your city, f**k it up however you want, I can just laugh from afar -- with a healthy, "Well, get a Purple mattress, because you've made your own bed, might as well get comfortable (according to their commercials)."

All of you, in fact, ENABLE the actions of the @Nova Fly Guys out in your midst because you don't want to speak-up against this sort of crap -- which YOU will be in fact paying for. (Tried to show you how Walgreens/Duane Reade makes you pay more because they can't be "bothered" to protect THEIR OWN bought and paid for merchandise, but shift those costs onto YOU, their customer once it's stolen. Blind eye, once again.)

I'm sure some of you get a bit dismayed when @BM5 via Woodhaven does an almost "forensic" analysis of the schedule changes, and you see your route get cuts applied to it. But you don't bat an eye when a flood of people barge through the back door of a bus without paying.

Don't start a big bitch-fest on here when fares go up or service is cut. YOU have tolerated/enabled it, live with the consequences.

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5 hours ago, Via Garibaldi 8 said:

I don't think it's become that bad... Yet... What I have seen (and continue to see) is when there is farebeating in my neighborhood, it's usually school kids that likely are playing hooky trying to get back home wherever they live without paying. Several weeks ago, I was waiting for the express bus.  Bx10 rolls up to the stop. Young high schooler gets on and tries to give some story. Driver wouldn't let him go.  He got off and waited for the next bus. Not sure what happened, as my express bus came by the time another Bx10 came into the stop. 

You know what point I was trying to get across, and just using you as a "reference point," so to speak.

But good to see that SOME of the bus operators actually follow policy (cat probably got a ride free on next bus -- and that's the problem).

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