E-ZPass is a convenient way to travel the thruway but you need to be vigilant while reviewing your charges or you may be paying too much.
You may want to check your E-ZPass statement. Our news partner, News10NBC found sometimes, the system doesn't work and when it doesn't, New York State and E-ZPass charge you a lot more money.
For instance, if this problem happens to just six drivers using I-90 in our area today, the state makes about $100. The NYS Thruway has hundreds of thousands of drivers everyday.
One of them is Douglas Yeomans.
He has a long commute from home to work, 53 miles each way. So, he uses the NYS Thruway. In fact, he pays for a special E-ZPass program so most of his tolls are zero. According to his E-ZPass statement, some trips get up to $3 or $4.
"When I see a $15 charge and I've never been south of Albany," Yeomans said. "I know there's a problem."
And that's what happened.
On June 29, Yeomans was charged $14.87. On July 4, he was charged $15.58.
Why did this happen?
Yoemans' statement shows that E-ZPass did not register where he got on the NYS Thruway. But it tracked the exit where he got off and that's when the system charged him as if he entered the NYS Thruway at the furthest toll away.
Yoemans says it's possible his receiver slid down his dashboard. The E-ZPass website warns receivers on the dashboard "will not work all the time."
News10NBC spoke with the New York State Thruway Authority. They said if this problem should happen, you should immediately get a warning from E-ZPass as you go through the toll.
News10NBC checked the thruway's traffic and financial reports.
From January to April this year, 40,648,511 vehicles traveled the NYS Thruway from Buffalo to just north of New York City. Seventy-five percent of those vehicles had E-ZPass and they paid the state more than $91 million.
On just two trips, E-ZPass overcharged Yoemans by $30.
"It takes time out of my day and my everyday routine. And it's kind of a pain," he said.
Yoemans said he called E-ZPass and got his money back. He said it took about 48 hours.
If you have a problem with an E-ZPass charge, call 1-800-333-TOLL. You can check your E-ZPass statement and look at all your charges going back 90 days.