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April 18, 2013

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Metro fare evaders to get steeper fines

THE city is to impose heavier fines and beef up police presence to crack down on fare evasion at Metro stations, according to local legislative proposals released yesterday.

More than 10,000 Metro riders evade fares every day, causing heavy losses, according to Bai Wanqing and 10 other legislators at yesterday's third meeting of the standing committee of the local legislative body.

"The punishment for evaders is too light, while there are few enforcement officers at Metro stations, which are the major reasons for the rampant evasion," the legislators said in their proposal.

Evaders are fined only five time the ticket price when caught, according to current Metro regulations. Ticket prices range from 3 yuan (49 US cents) to 10 yuan.

Evaders often jump over or slip under ticket turnstiles, or improperly use senior citizen cards or fake certificates to get free rides, the Metro operator said.

"So it is necessary to organize a special law enforcement team to curb such bad behaviors," lawmakers said.

The Metro operator already plans to organize a team of some 40 officers to help monitor the subway, officials said.

"Over 100,000 people have been caught trying to travel ticketless last year and a total of 500,000 yuan has been recovered from them," said Tian Yifeng, deputy manager with the Shanghai No. 2 Metro Operation Co.

The team of 40 members is not enough, he said.

Lawmakers also said yesterday that local authorities will work together on an ambulance priority rule to help keep ambulances from being blocked by other vehicles during emergencies.

Some local vehicles refuse to make way for ambulances, causing treatment delays and even the deaths of patients, said legislator Li Ming.

Li said local traffic police should produce a traffic management plan to be put into use when an ambulance encounters traffic jams, Li said.

The plan would be added to the city's Road and Traffic Management Regulation.


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