NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The New Year brought new parking headaches for drivers in New York City.
Parking meters citywide are not accepting credit cards or pre-paid parking cards because of a software glitch.
“This is actually the third time this has happened,” driver Gus Katsavrias told CBS2. “They’ve got to step up their technology. Bottom line is they’ve got to figure out what’s going on, what’s causing this glitch and get on top of it.”
More than 24 hours after the glitch was first reported, parking in the city remains problematic.
DOT crews are now trying to reconfigure the software on all 14,000 meters in the city. When CBS2’s Ali Bauman caught up with crews in Long Island City Friday – that process didn’t seem to be going very well.
So far they say roughly, 1,700 have been repaired. That’s about 12 percent.
Turns out, the software had an end date of Jan. 1, 2020 and was never updated by the vendor.
New York City’s Department of Transportation says drivers can still pay with coins — you need four rolls of quarters for two hours in many spots — or use credit cards via the ParkNYC app.
Katsavrias tried his credit card and the app, but neither worked.
“I have a commercial vehicle, so I have to use the meter every day,” said driver Bryant Stanley, who’s learned to always carry change just in case. “Sometimes the meter doesn’t take the card, so I usually go with coins.”
The big question on many drivers’ minds: If they are ticketed because of the malfunction, will they still face a fine?
All the DOT would say in a statement is that anyone who does not pay can still get a ticket.
The DOT originally said it would provide an on-camera interview about what’s going on with the meters. It then pushed the interview back several times and eventually canceled it entirely.
The Department of Finance released the following statement:
“We apologize for the inconvenience to drivers, however there are a number of other ways to pay parking meters and ensure drivers do not receive a ticket. NYC parking meters also accept coins, and drivers can also pay using the ParkNYC app. Drivers wishing to pay with a credit card can do so through the app.”
In the meantime, drivers are in a tough spot.
“I’ve got to get back into my truck now and look for another spot,” Katsavrias said.
The DOT said crews have been working to fix the problem, but each meter has to be reset individually and with tens of thousands of meters cross the city, that will take some time.
Apparently New York City is not alone. The DOT said cities around the world that use the same meter software are facing similar glitches.
The transportation department also tells CBS2 it’s training and deploying additional electricians this weekend so there will be crews working around the clock to solve this. The city predicts all the meters will be fixed by Thursday night, more than a week after this problem began.