Rome’s fare evasion crackdown is showing very positive results. In fact, figures are better than expected and beating records. In September, the transport agency Atac registered a monthly record of 16,000 fines. This is 30% more than forecasted. Also, up to 27.5% fines were paid within the first 5 days of issuing.
The effective fare evasion crackdown is based on three correlated elements: more ticket inspections, more fines and more money collection. This trident allows for a better control and, in turn, reduces revenue losses due to fare evasion.
More ticket inspections
Atac started the year with 160 ticket control units, but strengthened its ticket verification service drawing from its own staff. In addition, the company deployed targeted strategies and actions, such as evening checks.
Consequently, checks on passengers increased by 8,5% in comparison to last year. In total, controllers have asked for proof of payment to 2 million passengers.
Increasing checks allowed to detect a higher number of fare evaders. Thus, inspectors issued more fines. In September, Atac registered a monthly record of 16,000 fines. This is 30% more than the forecast. Overall, from January to September 2018, ticket inspectors issued 9% more fines to fare dodgers than during the same period last year.
More money collection
Recently, ticket inspectors were equipped with a portable POS. This allows caught fare dodgers to pay a reduced penalty immediate on board. According to Atac, 8% of fines were paid through POS. This represents one third of the penalties cleared within 5 days of issuing. Atac plans to deploy 32 more POS to further boost this results.
Specific fare evasion crackdown on buses
Atac is working hard to reduce fare evasion in Rome’s public transport. Intensified ticket checks and more fines are not the only measure. Last June, the transport operator introduced turnstiles in bus 669 as part of an experimental system.
Passengers must board buses through front doors only and validate their tickets or passes to cross the turnstiles. If someone forces de barrier, an acoustic warning activates for a few seconds and the side LEDs flash.