More staff to tackle Athens fare dodgers

STASY, the company that manages fixed-track forms of public transport in Athens, and OSY, responsible for buses and trolley buses in the broader metropolitan area, have moved staff from desk jobs to ticket counters and inspection duties in a bid to cut down on fare dodgers.

Sources told Kathimerini that STASY will have 90, rather 50, inspectors by the end of the month and 260, rather than 200, people manning ticket booths. At OSY, there will be 40 extra inspectors, taking the total to 230. This comes after a clampdown on ticket evasion earlier in the year.

In January, 5,080 fines totaling 272,000 euros were issued to bus and trolley bus passengers. By March this had risen to almost 10,000 penalty notices worth 506,000 euros. On the metro, tram and electric railway, there were 3,473 fines totaling 243,245 euros in February. This rose to 5,577 penalties with a value of 400,228 euros in May.

The companies, however, cannot rely on these penalties as a source of revenue since they are not on-the-spot fines and there is uncertainty about whether they will be paid.