Subway turnstyle "jumping"

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Subway turnstyle "jumping"

Postby ckb » Thu Apr 29, 2004 12:13 pm

So I've been taking greater note of some of the turnstyle "jumping" over the last few days and have some questions/comments:

It seems the preferred method of "jumping" is to walk up to the turnstyle, pull it towards you as if someone was exiting, step into the created space and then walk through as the gate returns to its 'home' position. Folks have the routine down quite smoothly so it must be pretty easy (and they probably have lots of practice). haven't tested it myself (with my luck i would be caught, despite an obvious lack of enforcement), but they do have quite a routine. some of them even act out putting in a token or swiping a pass and if you don't know what you are looking for, it is incredibly slick -- a lot more subtle than actually jumping over the things. It is also a rampant problem - today I noticed three people do it at Central just while I was on the train looking out the window -- and one of them was even a guy in a suit and carrying a breifcase!

Now, I know the T must be losing some substantial money this way, but the return on investment alone for having better enforcement probably isn't worth it (although I certainly wouldn't mind seeing some police in the stations every once in awhile in general, and I think their presence would help cut down on the problem).

But is there a better way to prevent this? Seems to me that once the turnstyles have been pulled just a bit they shouldn't be allowed to go back at all. Is this because they have been worn out, overworked, and undermaintained, or were they always like that? Does a similar thing happen in other cities (in new york and D.C. i have seen people doing the actual jump)? With the new fare collection system will the styles be new as well, or just the readers?
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Postby Robert Paniagua » Thu Apr 29, 2004 1:03 pm

Yeah, such as Braintree, they have a police officer watching the turnstyles, and also MBTA inspectours too. They also watch things like that too. But when neither are around, and the collectour is by themself, then I see people, mainly kids jump turnstyles. I've seen it a lot before.
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Postby Ron Newman » Thu Apr 29, 2004 3:04 pm

I've had to do this myself when my (valid) pass didn't read properly for some reason. I've never been stopped after doing so.

Even blatantly and slowly climbing over the turnstile doesn't seem to get attention.
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Postby CS » Thu Apr 29, 2004 6:07 pm

Well, when the automated system is in place, that would not be as much as a problem as it currently is.
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Postby Ron Newman » Thu Apr 29, 2004 10:45 pm

It might be more of a problem then. After all, the monthly passes are already a form of automatic fare collection. I've never had a turnstile fail to work when I insert a token.
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Postby jwhite07 » Fri Apr 30, 2004 5:37 am

I've had to do this myself when my (valid) pass didn't read properly for some reason. I've never been stopped after doing so.

Even blatantly and slowly climbing over the turnstile doesn't seem to get attention.


There's no reason to do this, really. Why couldn't you just walk over to the collector's booth, show your pass to him or her, and go through the collector-operated turnstyle?

Being a very early morning commuter, sometimes I get to the station before the collector arrives. In that case, if my pass doesn't work, I go through the wheelchair gate, which is usually unlocked when the booth is unattended.

I can't recall ever having to back-cock a turnstyle for any reason. In fact, if I see one that has been, I usually take a second to spin it back to normal position just to make it a little harder for the next cheater!
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Postby Ron Newman » Fri Apr 30, 2004 6:54 am

Because there's usually a line waiting at the collector's booth, and I don't want to impolitely cut in front of the people waiting there.

(By the way, this is also a problem for users of weekly and visitor passes, which aren't read by the current pass-readers.)
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Postby octr202 » Fri Apr 30, 2004 8:00 am

Huh...I've never been afraid to step around the collectors booth line when my pass doesn't work. Given that often there's only one or two working pass readers at the main turnstyles at Harvard (I can even remember a recent time when 0 were operating one morning!) there a regular stream of people who just flash their monthlies and the collector unlocks his/her turnstyle at the booth.

Fortunately, on a lot of those bad mornings they've been real good about having a collector or inspector open up the gate and let people thru with passes there. I think Harvard's fare equipment is being held together with bailing wire and chewing gum until the new stuff arrives.
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Postby CSX Conductor » Sat May 01, 2004 12:41 am

I'll admit, I have done the old pretending to swipe a pass routine also.
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