Customer disservice agent jumps into inaction at Forest Hills this morning

Meg Fowler Tripp reports from the Orange Line terminus:

All but 2 ticket machines & 2 gates not broken @ Forest Hills + rude T staff + seeing 1/2 people get on bus free = bah, fare increase.

No, not the guy with the pencil 'stache?

One of the ladies: "Like it's my @$&%! problem the machines don't work." -- after an older person got the "See Agent" message.

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Awww

That's the same response you get from the MTA employees in New York when the MetroCard machines go down.

Except those machines go down more because they're ancient.

ancience is a matter of opinion

The first Metrocard turnstiles were installed in 1993.

The first self-service Metrocard vending machines are from 1999. (Before that you bought or filled your card at the token booth, which you still can do in some stations.)

$100

Says it was the black lady who looks like a Cockatoo (Odd hair), i have seen her treat customers like this on more than one occasion. But it not like they can fire her, she's in the Union!

Fast fix

I was at Forest Hills just 20 minutes after this alleged meltdown and everything seemed to be working fine. All gates were working, the machines seemed normal, and no signs of customer frustration. So whatever went wrong, it got fixed quickly.

PS: Many times if you get a "See Agent" note, just wait 2 seconds and carefully scan your Charlie Card again. It usually works.

Not my experience. I buy a

Not my experience. I buy a monthly link pass and the darned thing several times states "not enough value", when I am trying to enter the Ashmont platform from Downtown Crossing. There is no one at those gates. After trying the thin a number of times, I went in after a patron, who promptly chewed me out on the platform for sneaking in. I tried to explain that I buy a monthly link pass...I needed Larry David to explain properly.

What the heck...I'll entertain you with this other story. Coming into work on the green line after an early dentist's appointment,getting off at Park Street I was not looking and stepped into a banana-like substance that sent me flying. This was on the Lechmere platform. There was no one there to tell to have the banana-like substance cleaned up. I went to my office, then decided to get someone to clean it up. Walked back, got on the wrong platform (B,C,D, line), went back up, tried to get through to Lechmere, and the reader flashed "not enough value", prbably because I had gone through another turnstile a minute earlier. Again, no one on that side of the platform. I called the information number, the lady that answered told me to walk in behind someone. I told her I would get arrested. She said she could see me and no one would arrest me.

The point of this long pointless story is that scanning the card a second time has not worked, in my experience, and the only alternative, if there is no gate agent, is to walk in behind someone, aggravating that law-abiding citizen by being a scofflaw.

My bad experience

There is a bug built into Charlie Cards that if you use them once you cannot use them again for 20 minutes. This is to allegedly prevent someone from using one and then handing it back out to a friend to use. It seems to only do this at random stations and random times however, and is utterly stupid and inconsistent. I have a monthly Link Pass and one time I got in at Harvard Station, realized I needed something at CVS, ran out and made the purchase and ran back in. The card wouldn't work due to the 20 minute glitch. I took this issue to the employee sitting in the little booth. He was one of the rudest indiviuals I have ever encountered. He was reading a book (a personal book, on company time), and all the time I spoke to him or he spoke to me he never looked up from it once. I explained to him what had happened, and he said "can't use it for 20 minutes". I explained again but he didn't budge and still never looked up. There were no other employees around, of course. At this point I was so frustrated by his attitude that I said "you're really rude". Still not looking up he said "yeah, I am" in a ho-hum way. I was in a hurry so I simply bought a one way ticket, even though I had a monthly pass. I really should have reported that guy, but I'm not sure what good it would have done. He was awful.

No need to buy another ticket

Pick up a newspaper, throw it over the fare gate so the sensor on the other side opens the gate, and then walk through. Or wait until someone is walking out of the gate, and rush the gate before it closes. Or, if you're athletically-inclined, simply jump over the gate The gate will probably buzz, but if the agent couldn't be bothered to look up from his book to help you, he certainly won't be bothered to investigate a buzzing gate.

Nobody can give you any crap about fare evasion, because you're not evading the fare; you already paid for a monthly pass.

More than half the time when

More than half the time when I get a See Agent method with my pass, if I swipe again it says Pass Already Used.

That means if someone with money on their card tried this, they'd lose money on the second swipe.

This is a really stupid software bug. The turnstile knows it didn't open, so it should know not to charge/do a pass lockout if you swipe again.

I quickly learned that See Agent really means Follow Someone Else Through The Turnstile.

This happens to me every time

This happens to me every time I get "See Agent".

The last time this happened, I left for a trip to Logan and made sure I had $5.10 on my card for when I got back (one ride for me, one ride for my friend meeting me, and one extra ride just incase). I go to tap my card, get see agent, then tap my card again and get that it has $0.00 balance! This has happened to me at least 3 times. There is no way to get that money back. It is so frustrating.