Drivers avoiding using EZ Pass after claiming wrong charges

Having an E-ZPass is supposed to save you money, but it cost one business owner hundreds of dollars. Tim Lager owns a landscaping business and watches every penny. He recently noticed more money going into his E-ZPass account.

"It's like every week, it seemed like they want $70 and I'm like I'm not using it this much," said Lager. "But I have a business, and I'm like alright maybe the guys are going through, but they're not.

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Lager called the Turnpike, and they told him he had racked up $570 in V-tolls. The Turnpike charges a V-toll when an E-ZPass customer's transponder doesn't register at a toll plaza.

"She just kept telling me she never seen so many on an account before and I was like this is crazy," said Lager.

Turnpike spokesman Carl Defebo said most often the transponder isn't mounted correctly under the windshield which leads to a V-toll.

"If you mount your E-ZPass transponder as per the instructions you are given 99.9% of the times, it's going to read effectively," said Defebo.

But Lager said he properly mounted his E-ZPass in his three work vehicles, "Every time I talked to them they say it's placed wrong and I have it right on the windshield, right behind the mirror and I'm like where else can I put it.

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In response to V-toll complaints that surfaced earlier this year, the Turnpike launched a new app that allows customers easy access to their accounts.

"It's kind of like your bank statement or your credit card statement," said Defebo. "You want to keep an eye on your account to make sure you are looking at your charges, and there is no issue with your transponder.

Defebo said it could also indicate a defective transponder or a low battery.

Lager said he still doesn't know why he got so many Vtolls and added it's been difficult trying to rectify it.

"Once you call them, you are on the line waiting for so long," said Lager. "By the time they give you somebody to actually talk to, they don't even want to talk to you. They are in a hurry as well. Then if you get disconnected, it's so frustrating."

In the end, Lager said the turnpike only agreed to credit his account $182 of the $570 in Vtolls. So he's told his employees to steer clear of the turnpike.

"Literally for the past two weeks I told them don't even take it, avoid it at all costs," said Lager. "I'll pay more money even if you go around. Just because of the Vtolls."