You may soon have to tap out of the L.A. Metro—here’s why

The new initiative seeks to promote rider safety.

Anna Rahmanan
Written by
Anna Rahmanan
Senior National News Editor
LA Metro
Photograph: Shutterstock

Let’s be honest: L.A.’s Metro system isn’t exactly the best in the country, and its safety record in particular has come into question lately.

That being said, things will hopefully soon change for the better: Metro just unveiled a new pilot program that will force passengers to use their fare cards to exit a station in addition to when they enter it. (Let’s not forget: Until just over a decade ago, most stations didn’t even have proper fare gates set up—and some still don’t!)

So far, the program is only in place at the B Line’s North Hollywood station. But the system is pretty simple: Riders will use their TAP cards to board a train (as they already do) and they will then be required to tap it again when exiting. If, for some reason, they did not pay the fare upon entering the system, they will automatically be charged upon exit.

The new “tap to exit” initiative seeks to combat rising acts of fare evasion across the system while bolstering overall safety measures. “People who do not pay or comply with the program are subject to citation or removal from the system entirely,” reports CBS News.

“We have also increased the visible presence of our teams at North Hollywood Station,” Metro said in an official statement earlier this week. “These include our Blue Shirts, who provide assistance with our Ticket Vending Machines, our Metro Ambassadors, who help riders navigate the system, connect you to resources and report issues they see, as well as our law enforcement partners, and our Transit Security Officers who enforce the Code of Conduct.”

But this isn’t all. Though crime overall has decreased on Metro over the past year, the number of headline-grabbing violent crimes has seemingly increased this year. As a result, the agency is clearly looking into ameliorating the system as a whole. In fact, just last week, the board announced the deployment of law enforcement agents across various stations and the debut of a program that will explore possible technological improvements to be made on all modes of public transportation.

There’s no word yet how long the NoHo pilot program will run or if it’ll expand to other stations.

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