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Media Release


New Ticketing Disaster Feared: Government Taskforce Re-Inventing the Wheel, Say Travellers

The Public Transport Users Association has warned travellers that ticketing problems may be perpetuated and even made worse if plans from the private operators and the Government come to fruition.

PTUA Secretary Vaughan Williams said that a Ticketing Taskforce had been set up by Transport Minister Peter Batchelor in response to an audit of the Metcard system earlier this year, which found that as many as half the automated ticket machines are out of order at any one time.

“This Taskforce has no consumer representation and is made up of the same private operators who want to fine everyone who has no ticket or the wrong ticket $100, whether or not they have acted honestly and even when they couldn’t buy a ticket due to faulty machines,” said Mr Williams

“It is also made up of the same bureaucrats who gave us the disastrous Metcard system and before that the Met Ticket debacle in the late 1980’s.”

Mr Williams said that the Taskforce seemed to be re-inventing the wheel, because a comprehensive investigation into the best ticketing system for Melbourne had already been conducted after the Met Ticket disaster.

“Any taskforce the Government sets up must have appropriate consumer representation and should have an implementation role for the recommendations of the Met Ticketing Taskforce of 1991, which were reached by consensus of the Department, the PTUA and an independent academic at the time.”

“In the meantime, the Government should stop the private operators spending taxpayer’s money that was earmarked for conductors and station staff on ticket inspectors and security guards. We were promised 100 genuine conductors and 100 station staff, which would be a good start towards fixing both safety and ticketing on the system,” concluded Mr Williams

The main recommendations of the 1991 Met Ticketing Taskforce were:

  • All stations staffed first to last train with full range of tickets available
  • Return of tram conductors to all but the quietest routes and times
  • Ticket machines used to assist staff by selling the more common tickets, not replace them
  • Wide range of tickets including dailies available on trams and buses
  • More emphasis on discounted periodical tickets

PTUA Office 9650 7898

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Last Modified: 17 December 2001