New data provided by TransLink suggests fare evasion on Metro Vancouver’s public transit system is on a downward trend.
The public transit authority says the number of fare infraction tickets issued has fallen from 31,980 in 2015 to 25,842 in 2016. After a grace period of several months to allow the public to adapt to Compass Card, all fare gates at SkyTrain stations and SeaBus terminals were fully closed in early-April 2016.
The fare gates, coupled with Compass Card, also ensure passengers pay their correct zone fare for the distance they have traveled on the trains and ferries.
Between the period of April 2016 and December 2016, fare revenue increased by $29 million over the same period in 2015 – an increase of 7.8% – partially due to a drop in fare evasion.
Compared to 2015, the number of tickets issued to fare evaders steadily declined throughout last year since April:
“It’s clear that fare gate closure has contributed to a drop in fare evasion,” Jill Drews, a spokesperson for TransLink, told Daily Hive. “Transit Police continue to conduct fare checks where and when appropriate.”
Transit Police continue to conduct fare checks across all services operated by TransLink.
Drews says bus drivers are only trained to assist with fare collection rather than fare enforcement. Drivers are instructed to press a “fare not paid” button on their dashboard that helps TransLink track how many passengers evade fares.
Fare checks and enforcement on SkyTrain and SeaBus are conducted Transit Security Officers.