Brent is the 'easiest borough' for Tube fare dodgers
PUBLISHED: 06:45 14 October 2015 | UPDATED: 10:30 14 October 2015
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Brent is the 'easiest borough' for fare dodgers in London after it was revealed as having the highest number of Tube stations where ticket barriers are frequently left open.
According to figures released by Navin Shah, Brent and Harrow London Assembly Member, out of the 20 stations that had its barriers open the most in London six were in the borough.
Five of the stations Harlesden, Kenton, North Wembley, Stonebridge Park and Kensal Green are on the Bakerloo Line and the fifth is Sudbury Town which is served by the Piccadilly Line.
Mr Shah told the Times that fare dodgers currently cost TfL more than £61million each year and the total could rocket through proposed job cuts across the network.
He said: “The vast majority of Londoners are honest about these things but there will always be a small minority who take advantage and try to avoid paying their fares.
“We should be doing all we can to crack down on fare dodgers, not making life easy for them by leaving some station ticket barriers open more than half the time.
“By cutting 950 staff from stations TfL risks having to leave ticket barriers open more often, making fare evasion that little bit easier. It’s a total false economy if the money saved by reducing staff is then lost as a result of increased fare dodging.”
TfL rules state that when there are no members of staff at a station to help passengers the barriers must be left open.
But in some cases the barriers could have been left open through a technical fault.
Bromley-by-Bow topped the London-wide list with its gates being left open 61.4pc of the time.
Steve Burton, TfL’s director of enforcement and on-street operations, said: “Fare evasion on our rail and bus networks has fallen to around just two per cent of all journeys, at the same time as overall passenger numbers have risen massively due to London’s growth. This shows that the overwhelming majority of our customers simply want to pay the correct fare and we now have more staff than ever before in ticket halls to assist them. “We take fare evasion of any kind extremely seriously and communicate the consequences of being caught without a valid ticket.
“For every journey, customers must have a valid ticket or tap in and out using Oyster or a contactless payment card – even if the ticket barriers are open. If customers do not tap in or out then they will be charged a maximum fare for the journey.”