Local transit website wants your help tracking broken ticket vending machines

screenshot of broken TVM web formA local transit writer says too many of TriMet’s ticket vending machines and validators are busted, and he’s decided to do something about it.

But he wants your help.

Lane Jensen, publisher of the earnestly muckraking (though often bile-filled) website and online radio program Portland Transit Lane, has created a public web form that lets anyone report a broken TriMet vending machine or ticket validator.

The mobile-friendly form takes about 30 seconds to fill out, thanks to careful instructions and a dropdown menu of every TriMet vending machine.

I’ve bookmarked the page on my own phone using the short URL http://pdx.be/BrokenTVM.

In some ways, Jensen’s project resembles the now-defunct website TriMetDown.com, which was launched by a different TriMet rider during a similar rash of broken TVMs in 2008. That website helped draw mainstream media attention and eventually more TriMet resources to fix the problem.

In other ways, Jensen’s project is different. He often says that his personal goal is to get the agency’s general manager, Neil McFarlane, fired.

Jensen said Wednesday that he’ll collect as many of these reports as he can and then bring them to TriMet to show just how often ticket vending machines malfunction.

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