Inside the SunPass Customer Service Center in Ocoee, frustrated customers lined up to voice their complaints about the recent flood of charges on their SunPass accounts.
"With me it's only $200," SunPass customer Jose Francisco Rodriguez said. "But with other people, it's around $500."
Rodriguez says he tried to shut down the autopay function on his SunPass account online multiple times.
"It's still taking the money," Rodriguez said.
That's why he decided to drive in and talk to a SunPass representative face-to-face to get the autopay function stopped.
Customer service representatives at the Ocoee branch confirmed the website has been having several issues since the system maintenance upgrade happened in June. News 6 called and emailed officials from the Florida Department of Transportation to verify the glitch and to see what was being done to correct it and were told their technical staff was looking into it.
On Tuesday, FDOT announced an investigation by the chief inspector is underway into Conduent, the state vendor responsible behind the botched upgrade. Conduent is facing nearly $800,000 in fines for the system-wide SunPass failures, which led to massive online billing problems and backlogged tolls. But customers say they feel they are the ones paying for the mistakes.
Hope Powell and her husband said they're now out $250 because of the online autopay glitch.
"We can't even take it off. Until the problem is resolved, they're going to keep charging our credit card, so we decided to come in," Powell said.
News 6 discovered between June 1 and August 12, SunPass processed more than 9,000 refunds, with a huge surge happening during the months of August and July. That's not including all the overdraft bank fees customers will soon be getting returned.
Joe Polomski drove almost an hour to take care of his overdraft issue. But he says he won't quit SunPass, even though it will be about a week before he gets his refund.
"That's OK, as long as I see it," Polomski said.
Others say they shouldn't have to wait or deal with the SunPass failure fallout. Many customers have told News 6 they are cancelling their SunPass accounts and either avoiding toll roads or switching to other tolling entities.
According to the Central Florida Expressway Authority, they have seen a 39 percent surge in new Epass customers between the months of June, July and August this year compared to last year’s figures.
A Florida's Turnpike Enterprise spokesperson on Friday released a statement about the autopay problems.
"In the coming days, the SunPass.com website will be updated to allow customers to opt-out of the EasyPay program electronically. Customers should keep in mind that if they opt-out of EasyPay, they will not be able to participate in the SunPass Plus Parking Program. Customers who wish to make changes to their SunPass accounts may also contact the SunPass Customer Service Center at 1-888-TOLL-FLA or 1-888-865-5352."
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