Do not use the Opal card on Illawarra line yet; fines could apply

Passengers who ‘‘jump the gun’’ and use newly installed Opal card machines on the Illawarra line could be fined for fare evasion.

Tickets were invalid while the system was in test mode, a Transport for NSW spokesman said.

The warning followed an exchange between followers of the Leader on Twitter.

Nathan@njhawke tweeted @theleadernews: ‘‘When will Opal card reader be activated on Cronulla line?’’

Stephen@sydneymob answered, ‘‘Seems to work despite the signs. been using mine from jannali to town hall for past couple of weeks no problem’’.

The spokesman said signs warned passengers not to use the machines in test mode and station staff had been asked to reinforce this message.

‘‘Customers who use Opal equipment before the g- live date are not travelling with an appropriate ticket and face fines,’’ he said.

The spokesman said customers would be given ‘‘lots of notice’’ before the system went ‘‘live’’ but customers could register at any time at

Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian hinted recently that the Opal system could be activated on the Illawarra line well ahead of the end of this year, which is the government’s stated deadline for it to operate across the Sydney suburban and intercity rail networks.

Do you use the Opal card on other lines and how do you find it?