No automatic refunds, says Auckland Transport after Hop-machine outage stings commuters

Commuters boarding at Takanini were stung with a penalty yesterday after both HOP machines at the station broke. Photo/ file
Commuters boarding at Takanini were stung with a penalty yesterday after both HOP machines at the station broke. Photo/ file

Broken Hop card machines have left some Auckland commuters out of pocket, and unless they complain Auckland Transport says it will not be issuing refunds.

Tag-on machines at the Takanini train station were broken yesterday, meaning commuters boarding at that station weren't able to tag on.

They were then charged a penalty for not tagging on when they got off the train.

Auckland Transport spokesman Mark Hannan said an initial fee of $4.90 would be charged to anyone who tagged on in Takanini.

"This will be more than the fare for some customers, the correct fare for others, and less than the correct fare for the remainder," he told the Herald.

Having all of the units out of service on a platform at the same time was rare but had been an issue yesterday morning, he said.

"We don't proactively refund, because we don't know where the travel originated.

"If customers can let us know then we will certainly look at a refund."

Commuter Gareth Poley told Fairfax he was fined even though he had a valid monthly pass.

When he spoke to staff about it at the Newmarket train station he was told "you've been penalised, you should have bought a ticket".

"Had I not reported it to her they would have taken it off without me being aware of it," he said.

He planned to ask for a refund as he already paid $200 a month for his pass.

- NZ Herald

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