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Truckie boss overcharged $57,000 in tolls 'disgusted' over debacle

An owner of a NSW trucking company had over $50,000 removed from his account and is among thousands of E-Toll users who were reportedly grossly overcharged.

Transport for NSW issued an apology last Friday to the 45,194 E-toll users impacted by the technical error, confirming a "thorough investigation" is underway.

Jason Clenton told Ben Fordham on 2GB on Friday he was "absolutely disgusted" $57,000 had been taken from his account.

It was no April Fool's Day joke, thousands of people who took to toll roads were over-billed after a technical mishap last week.

Mr Clenton was assured last Saturday no more money would be taken out of his account after he realised he had been overcharged.

However, on Monday, over $17,000 had been taken from his account.

 Jason Clenton had $57,000 taken out of his bank account, due to a technical problem at Transport for NSW. Source: 7News
Jason Clenton had $57,000 taken out of his bank account, due to a technical problem at Transport for NSW. Source: 7News

Earlier this week, 7News reported Mr Clenton was being charged $1000 per toll.

Instead of the refund he was promised, Mr Clenton was told he would instead receive $57,000 worth of credit. Mr Clenton would rather have the money back in his account.

He called on Minister for Metropolitan Roads Natalie Ward to come on air and ensure that the money which was taken from his account and the accounts of other motorists would be returned.

"A credit is absolutely no good to me, I've deactivated my account," he said, explaining he no longer has an E-Tag, after the debacle.

Ms Ward did speak to Mr Fordham on Friday morning.

"Let me be absolutely clear, this should never have happened in the first place. That money should not have come out of those accounts," she said.

All overcharged tolls to be returned

The minister explained she has spoken to the head of the department and made her expectation "crystal clear" — the money taken from the accounts needs to be returned.

"No exceptions. I have stressed this is an urgent situation," she said.

"It is entirely unacceptable and I want that money back in those accounts immediately."

Sunday traffic is seen travelling on the Bradfield Highway in the suburb of North Sydney on May 17, 2020 in Sydney, Australia.
Thousands of people had money wrongfully taken out of their bank accounts. Source: Getty Images

Ms Ward "unequivocally" apologised to the affected customers and said she made it clear to the department she was "disappointed" the expectations she set out were not met.

She said the cause of wrongful withdrawals was due to someone working in IT upgrading software.

Ms Ward said she has been advised that refunds have been given to all affected motorists and said there might be some delay with the banks

"It should be imminent, if it hasn't happened already, depending on the individual bank accounts, but I am advised Transport has done all those refunds at their end," she said.

Mr Clenton was still on the line when Ms Ward was speaking to 2GB and he says he is still waiting on the money to be returned to him.

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