NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — It was an unintentional case of “Undercover Boss.”
The MTA confirms Metro-North Railroad president recently rode the Hudson Line from Grand Central to Tarrytown, but no one checked for tickets in his train car, giving passengers a free ride.
Watchdog Jim Cameron with the Commuter Action Group said this is common and it infuriates monthly pass holders.
“What angers commuters who are paying their fare, who have monthly tickets is that they see people getting a free ride. They feel cheated,” Cameron said. “It’s like walking into a store and seeing somebody shoplift. You know that ultimately you’re going to have to pay for that theft and the same thing’s true with commuters. We know that the railroad operates at a deficit but how much could that deficit be shrunk if every passenger was expected to pay.”
Cameron believes the railroad is losing millions of dollars.
“The average car on Metro-North carries about 100 passengers and the average fare is $10 to $15,” Cameron said. “Do the math and you will realize how much money is being lost. ”
The MTA does not estimate how much goes uncollected, but Cameron said officials once told him the figure is about $2 million per year, WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reported.
The Journal News first reported the president’s free ride. The paper reports the president reported the conductor to his supervisor.
It’s unclear why tickets were not collected.