Bus inspector fines young girl even though she had mum's Oyster card
An 11-year-old girl was hit with an £80 fine on her bus ride to school despite pleading with inspectors her young persons Oyster card was lost.
Demi Graham, a pupil at Overton Grange School, had tried to explain to inspectors she was waiting for a new zip card, but in the meantime her mother had given her an adult Oyster card with £10 on it.
After several days of using the card for school, the money had ran out, but as the youngster had only been riding public buses on her own for a couple of weeks, she did not know what to do.
Mother Angela Graham said the inspectors wanted to make an example of her.
She said: "When she explained to the bus driver what had happened, he was ok with it and let her on.
"But when the inspectors got on they wanted to make an example of her. She said it was like being told off at school, and now she is scared of getting on the bus.
"What if this happens again when it is dark, and this time the bus driver tells her to get off? I hate to think what would happen, there needs to be a common sense approach."
Mrs Graham said she rang bus garages in vain to see if the card had been handed in, but was told she should get an adult Oyster for her daughter to use temporarily.
She said: "My daughter was so upset when it happened. She is only 11 and she's quite shy, this experience hasn't helped."
A new zip card - which allows those 11-15 allows to travel for free on London's buses and trams - has now arrived at their home address in Cannon Hill Lane, Raynes Park, after they paid a £10 replacement card fee.
Transport for London has since agreed to rescind the fine after the Sutton Guardian contacted them.
Nick Owen, TfL's head of bus enforcement, said: "This passenger was new to the transport system and should have been given an unpaid fare ticket by the driver.
"Unfortunately it appears this did not happen in this instance and therefore we will cancel the Penalty Fare issued to Miss Graham by ticket inspectors."
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