SPECIAL REPORT: TAB troubles continues 17 days after computer system upgrade

By Clarissa Kell-Holland, Land Line staff writer | 3/13/2012

While most customers of the Transportation Alliance Bank of Ogden, UT, are now able to log in to their accounts, some are reporting that they are still having issues more than two weeks after TAB underwent a full computer system upgrade on Feb. 26.

On Tuesday, March 13, OOIDA Life Members Regis and Gloria Gray of Duncansville, PA, were still struggling to get their account credited with deposits that should have posted around the time of the upgrade.

Gloria Gray told Land Line that she has sent 26 emails to TAB since March 2 inquiring about the status of the deposits. Now, she said she is getting overdraft letters in the mail from the bank for an amount she doesn’t show them owing, but still hasn’t received a reply about the missing deposits.

“This has really put us in a bind,” Gloria Gray said. “Since we can’t get our TAB account to work, we are borrowing from our home account to pay for the truck. I don’t like to do that, but that’s our only choice right now.” 

She said she is able to get her husband, Regis, money via his Comdata card, but that each transaction costs 90 cents.

“It’s frustrating that we can’t get to the money we could be using, instead of using money in our home account,” Gray said.

OOIDA members Tom and Tonya Saunders of Livingston, TX, were still having problems with their account on Tuesday.

He said a normal deposit typically takes around 15 minutes to post, but that his wife had spent two hours on the phone after waiting five hours for her deposit to post on Tuesday.

A few days after TAB’s computer system upgrade, Tom Saunders said the severity of the situation hit him when he ran out of fuel near Rivers, Manitoba, in minus 30 degree weather, because he hadn’t been able to use his card.

“They (TAB) kept telling us everything will be fine tomorrow, but I ran out of fuel one exit away from my fuel stop,” he said. “I had to hike through waist-deep snow to get to a Wal-Mart to try and buy a gas can.”

He said they only had one-gallon gas cans, so instead he bought a 40-gallon trash can and then pushed it to a nearby gas station in a shopping cart.

“I had to use my personal credit card,” he said. “Amazingly, the lady at the station didn’t say anything about me filling up a trash can in a grocery cart full of diesel,” Saunders said. “She looked a little puzzled, but thank God she let me do it.”

Saunders said he then had to wheel his 40 gallons’ worth of diesel in the grocery cart down the highway as close as he could get to his truck.

“I had a 5-gallon bucket in the truck, so I then had to tote the diesel 5 gallons at a time up to the truck and use a funnel to put 20 gallons in each tank. Then I got the fuel filters off and got those primed, and luckily it started right up. Sometimes trucks don’t want to start real well when it’s 30 below.”

On Monday, Eric Myers, director of marketing for TAB, said they averaged around 20,000 calls each day for the first two days. He said a normal day for calls is around 1,000. He said he doesn’t have the call numbers for the second week, but said he was on the customer service floor on Monday and that “average wait times were at 20 minutes.”

TAB customers have been directed to email tab.info@tabbank.com with any problems because their phone network provider isn’t able to handle the volume of calls they have received since the conversion.

TAB is a wholly-owned subsidiary of FJ Management, Inc., which provides financial services to the transportation industry. TAB provides banking services to approximately 550 Pilot Flying J Travel Centers nationwide.

Myers said he was unable to disclose the number of customers that were affected by the computer upgrade because of “competitive reasons.” He said TAB customers can still check the status of the banking issues or call customer service at 800-355-3063.

Copyright © OOIDA