July 6, 2018 8:29 am
Updated: July 6, 2018 1:16 pm

Transit police dishing out more tickets for fare gate funny business, fewer for fare evasion

Fewer people are getting ticketed for fare evasion, but the number of people playing fast and loose with the fare gates is on the rise.

Global News

The addition of fare gates to TransLink’s SkyTrain and SeaBus system have seen a surge in a new form of ticket issued by Metro Vancouver Transit Police.

Numbers obtained by Global News show that in 2016, more than 6,600 provincial violation tickets were issued to people “misusing” fare gates.

LISTEN: Translink data shows crackdown on problem users

Transit police spokesperson Anne Drennan said that category covers a variety of behaviours.

READ MORE: 1 year in, how are TransLink’s fare gates working out?

“Forcing [the gates] open or closed — which happens all too often — causing damage in some way, tampering with them, jumping over them and not tapping-in or out but piggybacking or sliding in behind somebody else who is going through that is tapping-in or out.”

In 2017, the number of these types of tickets issued more than doubled to nearly 14,000.

WATCH: One year in, how are TransLink’s fare gates working out?

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Drennan said once these people are ticketed, they’re also checked for other offences.

That has also resulted in an 18 per cent increase in the number of warrants executed and arrests made for breaches of court-imposed release conditions.

Drennan said those changes have made the system safer.

READ MORE: No Compass Card, no problem: TransLink launching credit card, mobile wallet tap system Tuesday

“There is no question, you’re taking the people who are on the system that you don’t want on the system off the system and making it much safer for those law-abiding citizens who just want to get from A to B,” Drennan said.

Meanwhile, the number of fare infraction tickets, those issued to people caught without proof of payment inside a fare-paid zone, is dropping.

In 2016 there were 26,000 of those tickets issued, which dropped to 21,000 in 2017, and about 7,000 more than halfway through 2018.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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