WOODLAND HILLS — Metro fare evaders along the Orange Line will now have to watch out for extra sheriff’s deputies, as of February 25.

 An increase in individuals evading fares by not using their TAP cards has prompted Metro services to bolster security along the bus line using deputies from the Sheriff’s Transit Services Bureau, according to a press release from Metro.

 “There is no excuse for breaking the law and trying to ride for free,” said Metro CEO Art Leahy. “Metro fares are amongst the lowest in the

United States.”


The increase in enforcement is due to three audits conducted by Metro over the past few months. The first is from December 3, 2013, which showed that 22 percent of riders evaded fares by not having a valid TAP card or lacking a sufficient balance on their TAP cards. Nine percent where shown to have valid TAP cards or valid passes, but failed to utilize either before boarding, which Metro counts as a “misuse” of the TAP cards. The audit from December 17, 2013, showed 16 percent of riders were fare evaders and 9 percent misused their cards. The last audit from February 11 had 7 percent as evaders and 5 percent as those who misused their cards.


The overall decrease in fare evasion since December, according to Metro, has been because of enforcement of their policies.


“Enforcement works,” said Councilman Paul Krekorian during a media event on February 26. “We’re also educating the public on how you use the TAP system.”


Metro will also be putting up new signs on all 18 stations of the line in an attempt to direct and remind riders to properly use their TAP cards to avoid any unnecessary citations. The Orange Line has about 30,000 people weekly board, according to Metro.