PITTSBURGH — E-ZPass is supposed to be a convenient tool for drivers who use the Pennsylvania Turnpike, but 11 Investigates has learned that isn't the case for all drivers.
One woman contacted 11 Investigates after she was charged $1,400 over the course of 90 days.
"It's absolutely ridiculous. I don't understand how you can do everything right and get penalized," Nikki Wright said.
Wright, like many other drivers interviewed by 11 Investigates, said she was told her E-ZPass wasn't registering at the tolls during her two weekly trips between Monroeville and Harmarville.
The toll is supposed to be $1.40 each way, but she was getting charged $10 every time.
"I'm crying. I'm upset. This is a lot of money. I have two kids. I have expenses. One thousand dollars isn't $10. This is a paycheck and a mortgage," she said.
A turnpike spokesperson told Channel 11 that most of the problems occur when transponders aren't mounted properly under the rearview mirror.
"If you mount your E-ZPass transponder as per the instructions, you are given 99.9 percent of the time, it's going to read effectively," Carl Defebo said.
Eventually, Wright convinced E-Z Pass to refund all of the money from the past 90 days, but she said it was not easy.
"I have nowhere to turn. You call these people, they put you on hold. You can't speak to a supervisor," she said.
Now she's trying to get the money back that had been taken out of her account prior to that.
"What's supposed to be a convenience is a complete inconvenience, and if you don't find out they're only taking a little bit here or there, you have 90 days and that's it. They refused to go past that. They will not refund you past that 90-day limit. 'It's your due diligence to check your account' is what I was told," she said.
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