February 02, 2011

PLCB: failed wine kiosks back online

The wine dispensing vending kiosks are back in service and open to the public after a technical tuneup. Thirty machines in total.

PLCB: failed wine kiosks fixed - News - The Times-Tribune

ter being maligned for how they function and failing to function properly, the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board's wine kiosks have returned following a technical tuneup, ready to vend bottles of wine at Wegmans stores in Dickson City and Wilkes-Barre Twp.

Tuesday afternoon, the machines went live again after an absence of more than a month. The PLCB, which controls wine and spirits distribution and sales in the state, took the machines offline after repeated technical problems and complaints.

"There were sporadic problems with the machine, and the PLCB made the right decision to shut them down and fix the problem," said Wegmans spokeswoman Jo Natale.

The two local machines are among 30 statewide headed back in service.

The machines gained notoriety not just for the failure but the tedious steps to which customers had to subject themselves to make a purchase, including scanning a driver's license and credit card, blowing into a breath analyzer and being monitored on camera by a state employee in Harrisburg who remotely approves each sale.

Nevertheless, Ms. Natale said customers like the convenience of buying wine where they purchase food.

The maker and operator of the machines, Simple Brands, repaired and tested the machines, called "Pronto Wine Kiosks," said PLCB spokeswoman Stacy Kriedeman. The PLCB also conducted its own testing.

State officials expect to have 100 kiosks when the machines are totally rolled out. Walmart also has applied to host kiosks.

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PLCB: failed wine kiosks fixed - News - The Times-Tribune

Posted by staff at February 2, 2011 06:29 AM