Local MTA inspectors were found to have been faking inspection reports on subway tracks for the last twelve years. These inspections were supposed to be done on track signals in the subway that prevent cars from crashing into one another. Rather than performing the actual inspections, the workers were found to have kept a binder of copied bar codes where they could simply scan from the book instead of doing their actual job.
The MTA has previously started putting bar codes on the signals to prevent workers from missing inspections. By scanning from their binder of codes, the workers continued to undermine their employer and not do any of the work. Ten of the workers were finally arrested for fraud.
The charges for eight of the workers fell under tampering with public records which is a felony. Two immediate supervisors of the workers were charged with misconduct and record-tampering. The workers claim in their defense that management wanted too many safety inspections. An attorney for some of the arrested workers claimed their actions were justified because the quotas were impossible.
The attorney also issued a statement saying ‘We want to assure the public that at no time did any one of these people not correct, or work on, or check the safety of the signal’ and ‘They always did the tests that were necessary to ensure the safety of the public’. However, according to those involved, there was uncertainty in how the accused workers made the determination as to which inspections were vital to safety in preventing subway accidents and which inspections were considered busy work.