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Risky TikTok “hack” shows ways to avoid camera overload

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This will take a toll!

Some drivers are so desperate to avoid congestion pricing that they may be willing to endanger lives to avoid the toll cameras.

A video shared on social media this week revealed a possible hacker attack to bypass the toll camera on West End Avenue by cutting through a parking garage with an entrance at 60th Street and an exit at 61st Street .

Toll cameras will be installed on West End Avenue for drivers crossing 60th Street into the congestion pricing zone, which is expected to take effect in June. Michael Nagle

“I just avoided the toll booth in New York City,” the narrator, his voice disguised, said, chuckling as he drove through the Upper West Side garage.

However, the driver filmed himself leaving the congestion pricing zone, which could come into force as early as June 15th.

If a driver is driving in the opposite direction, turning left onto 61st Street and driving through the garage, they can seemingly successfully avoid the camera.

This comes with a big catch: you have to drive the wrong way through the single-lane, single-lane parking garage, potentially leading to a head-to-head duel.

The Sessanta Garage on the Upper West Side runs from 60th Street to 61st Street. Michael Nagle

The congestion tariff requires passenger vehicles to charge $15 during rush hour and commercial vehicles to charge $24 to $36 when entering Manhattan at 60th Street or below.

Opponents call the move a burden on working-class drivers, particularly in the outskirts or other parts of the tri-state area that lack adequate public transportation.

What you should know about congestion pricing

  • These fares are valid during peak hours, 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. on weekdays and 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. on weekends. At other times, tolls are reduced to $2.75 for passenger vehicles, $6 for small trucks, $9 for large trucks and $1.75 for motorcycles. Other tariffs remain the same.
  • Excluded are emergency vehicles, school buses, special government vehicles and vehicles used to transport people with disabilities.
  • Drivers entering Manhattan via a toll tunnel receive a $5 discount.

Gov. Hochul included a measure in her budget proposal that would allow police to charge fare evaders with Class A toll theft.

Proponents claim the new toll would provide funding for much-needed improvements and reduce traffic. Michael Nagle

The controversial plan is in federal court this week as New Jersey seeks to block the measure.

Some people admonished the TikToker for sharing the video, saying he should have kept it secret. “I park in this garage…I thought I was the only one who knew,” one commenter said.

Others predicted that the gap would be “patched up” in the shortest possible time.




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