Commuters ‘overcharged’ �1.6 million at Liverpool Street
COMMUTERS using Liverpool Street station could have been overcharged by more than �1.6 million last year.
Those who failed to touch in or out with their Oyster cards would have faced the maximum penalty charge in a system which London Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon has branded “totally unacceptable”.
Liverpool Street was the third highest-grossing station for maximum penalty charges last year.
Only Waterloo and London Bridge made more money from maximum fares.
Customers are automatically charged �7.40 for a single journey if they fail to touch in or out.
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Ms Pidgeon said: “This level of overcharging is totally unacceptable.
“Of course in some cases passengers might forget to touch in and touch out, but such huge levels of overcharging clearly demonstrate that there are some structural problems with how Oyster is operating.
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“It is clear that not enough is being done to ensure the machines and the technology are working properly.”
She had previously argued many National Rail stations have no barriers and do not make it clear customers must touch in and out.
Since Oyster cards became accepted at all national rail stations last year, maximum penalty charges have amassed �25.8 million across the capital.
There was �3.2 million overcharged on the Docklands Light Railway.
A total of �10 million was refunded to customers.
The Greater London Authority said maximum fares are not overcharges because the terms of pay as you go make it clear users must touch in and out.
It added the penalty is there to deter fraud.
Ms Pidgeon is calling on TfL to regularly publish the amounts of overcharging at every station as a warning to customers.
Transport for London denied maximum fare charges are overcharges.
A spokesperson said: “We are seeing the number of incomplete journeys falling - just two per cent of journeys on the TfL network are left incomplete and we are confident that the Oyster system, which has transformed the way people pay for travel, is charging correctly.
“If a customer fails to touch in or out they are charged a maximum fare however up to 80 per cent of those maximum fares would have been payable had passengers touched out correctly.”
It said those who think they have been overcharged should apply for a refund.