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Railways: Penalty Fares

Question for Department for Transport

UIN 210355, tabled on 14 October 2014

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps his Department is taking to monitor the fairness with which rail companies issue penalty fares notices.

Answered on

21 October 2014

The Department is responsible for the policy and legal framework under which penalty fares operate in England and Wales. Train operators that have opted to have a penalty fares scheme must operate it in accordance with Department rules. The rules are designed to be fair, appropriate and consistent.

The penalty fares system is designed to be run by the industry and the Department relies on Passenger Focus (a statutory independent watchdog for rail passengers) to oversee arrangements, as they are best placed to do so.

The Department has regular dialogue with Passenger Focus about a range of issues, including the administration of penalty fares, to inform its view on the effectiveness of the current arrangements.