Or when frustrated drivers start busting right through them, the airport may find itself without any gates left. From a FrontBurnervian:
Tried to exit DFW about 7:30 last night. System was down — at least intermittently — and wouldn’t read my tolltag. Not just me. In the lane to my right, there was nearly a riot and someone just drove through the gate breaking it off. I looked as I heard it hit the ground. People out of their cars in line, horns honking, and the poor bastards in the green vests trying to help people. In my own case, the green vest guy pushed a button and I was then talking with someone through the little speaker in the credit card box(kind of like a bad Jack in the Box drive through joke). Very hard to hear him with all the engine noises, horns and yelling. He asked when I drove into the airport and figured up my bill as $47. I said fine, but the machine won’t read my tolltag. He said, “Well, you can use a credit card.” I had to exit my vehicle, and get a credit card out of my luggage to insert into the machine. It produced a receipt and opened the gate. I wonder if I also will be billed something on the tolltag eventually. The last time this happened it cost me a couple of hours and several phone calls to get it straight. I wonder why when this new “upgraded” system fails, they don’t just pass the traffic (but of course that would cost the airport money). The yelling, the honking, the people out of their cars, the broken gate — I honestly thought there was going to be a riot.
This is simple. Take a cue from business. When a customer complains about their subscription to D Magazine, we don’t investigate whether they are right or wrong. We just issue a refund. When you don’t like a product from Amazon, they don’t make you fill out a form. They just issue a refund. When its wonderful new tolltag system breaks down for the umpteenth time, DFW Airport has a similar option. Open the gates. Let everyone through. Fix the system before you try to charge for it.