Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Thousands Go Free on Tube as Oyster Breaks Down Again

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Thousands Go Free on Tube as Oyster Breaks Down Again

Article excerpt

Byline: DICK MURRAY

HUNDREDS of thousands of Tube passengers travelled free today as the Oyster card system failed again the second time in two weeks.

Emergency messages were flashed to all 280 stations telling staff to open the automatic ticket barriers and allow passengers through. The system went down at 6am when Oyster card readers were not able to read prepay cards. Engineers immediately began trying to find the problem but the gates stayed open throughout the morning peak period.

The failure stunned Tube bosses who had confidently predicted there would be no more problems after the Oyster failure two weeks ago.

More than 60,000 passengers had their cards corrupted when they used them on Saturday 12 July and thousands were allowed to travel free to prevent chaos on the Monday after.

On that occasion, a software problem with automatic readers wiped the cards and passengers were charged the maximum of [pounds sterling]4 for each trip they made. …

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