Transit Cheats Plague San Francisco's MUNI

Ever wonder how many people hop on those cable-cars in San Fran without paying the fare? Well, it turns out that transit cheats cost MUNI, San Francisco's transit agency, an estimated, $19 million a year.

A recent study to be presented to the Municipal Transportation Agency (Muni) governing board Tuesday, echoes what many Muni regulars long have griped about: Fare cheating is commonplace. In fact, the study estimates approximately 10 percent of riders do not pay a fare on the system that includes the famous trolley cars, a light rail system, and the agency's bus system.

Transit cheating occurs on crowded buses and near-empty ones. In many cases, riders board illegally through the back door; in others they ask the drivers for a "courtesy ride" or refuse to pay.

Transit operators, according to the report, give these free rides based on fear of assault. Other riders simply board on the back door of a bus, or fail to pay a fare on the trolley line.

Full Story: Muni finds almost 10% of riders are fare cheats



The (nonexistant) Blue Line....

I've been a San Francisco resident since 1984, a daily Muni rider, and have not even seen a Muni Transit Police officer on a bus I've ridden at any time since 2000 (sic). The estimate of 10% fare evasion is ludicrously low-ball; it is much higher, and increasing as those who might otherwise pay have concluded:

1. Only fools queue up and pay to stand while scofflaws take the seats;
2. Muni is practicing a cynical policy of benign neglect of any effort to enforce fare collection.

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