That's a lot of money.
And it doesn't even take into account how many people just don't bother filing a service guarantee claim. I forget - a lot. I think I filed three in 2016.
Another thing I'm bad at is calling into Presto when the readers fail on the bus and I can't tap off. I'm charged for the whole bus trip to wherever it terminates. I think I spent close to $60 due to Presto card reader failures in 2016. So maybe, the Presto windfall due to reader failure cancels out the expense of service guarantees! Brilliant!
Anyone else feel that Metrolinx just doesn't have its house in order? It can't just be me.
Presto is a nightmare. Presto sure has its failures ... just yesterday notices finally went up on Facebook and Twitter informing cardholders that the self-load machines are experiencing technical difficulties. And since I have your attention, there's something else I'd like to point out. I get that Presto is frustrating, but those frustrations don't warrant harassment of Metrolinx spokespeople and the social media teams for Presto and Go Transit. You can voice an opinion (all the accounts are monitored and trust me when I say that people that matter do read the tweets and Facebook comments). I voice opinions all the time. What you shouldn't do is attack, berate and insult the people behind these accounts. It's not cool. In fact, when you are deliberately mean, no one will want to listen to you. And I don't care that these people are paid to represent the organization, they are not paid to be told to "eff off and die" and be subjected to verbal abuse.
Now where were we? Oh yeah, the cost of the GO Transit service guarantee. The Toronto Star story has some interesting statistics and the reporter managed to get a tally of the number of train delays from Metrolinx for the past three years:
2014: 3447 delays
2015: 4383 delays
2016: 4066 delays
The article also states: Factors that GO considers outside its control include police investigations, trespassing incidents, pedestrian collisions, and extreme weather.
I was interviewed for the article and I pointed out my on-going concern about a factor that does warrant a refund - engine failure. GO Transit doesn't have a solid plan for what to do when a train breaks down. Check out this story from 2013 and this past September's hostage-taking. History just repeats itself. Not having a plan proves to be very costly since September's breakdown resulted in all of us on the train being reimbursed $100 each.
Hopefully, this tremendous figure of $4 million warrants a solution.