"Human error" has been blamed for Metrolink passengers being fined — even though they had paid for a ticket.

Transport chiefs have issued the statement after reports came to light that passengers had been charged the "standard fare" on the network — £60 in total — having been checked by on-platform inspectors after they finished their journey.

The partner of one passenger, posting on Reddit, claimed that the fine can be inaccurately issued because the machines used to check cards "only check if you are in the middle of a journey, and issue a fine if not".

“Going through appeal, as girlfriend was fined after tapping out then having inspection coming off the platform,” they said on Wednesday, March 13. 

“Ticket inspector machines do not show them if you have a valid ticket at all, it will only check if you are in the middle of a journey, and issue a fine if not.

"Customer service was really nice, but their systems are an absolute shambles!”

Other passengers have reported similar issues, albeit having been checked by an inspector before they started their journey.

Now, the boss of Metrolink has apologised for the "human error", and urged anyone affected to get in touch and appeal their fine.

“As part of a new plan to tackle fare evasion and protect revenue on Metrolink, we have more staff than ever on the network checking tickets and reassuring passengers travelling by tram,” said Damien Chabas, managing director at KeolisAmey Metrolink.

“Tens of thousands of tickets are checked every single day.

“There are robust processes and training in place to ensure staff check that passengers using contactless have paid their fares correctly.

"Most of the time this happens without incident, however mistakes can sometimes be made, and this looks like a case of human error on the part of a member of staff.

“I would like to apologise to the customers affected, and I would urge anyone who has experienced the same to get in touch.”