Electronic toll collection system is rapidly becoming the most popular way for commuters to pass through tolls on highways, expressways, etc. Gone are the days when people used to collect toll charges sitting in booths. The fact that drivers need not to carry any cash is one of the main reasons why electronic toll system has become so popular.
Electronic toll collection system is very fast and efficient mode for collection of toll charges at the toll plazas. This saves a lot of time since vehicles passing through the toll plaza do not stop to pay toll and the payment automatically takes place from the account of the vehicle.
There are number of benefits of Electronic Collection system, few of them are listed as under:
* Time saving – Electronic toll system users do not stop for paying toll, this helps a lot for saving the travel time
* Emission control — Due to the elimination of the acceleration and idling, harmful vehicular emissions are reduced. Though this benefit only affect the surrounding areas, even then it is highly beneficial for toll plaza areas. Hence, helps in air pollutant reduction.
* Increased Capacity — It is observed that the capacity of the lane also increases by approximately by three folds. The toll plaza would be able to accommodate the increasing traffic without additional lanes.
* Accident reduction —It is observed that there is reduction in the number of accident caused near the toll plazas due to considerable decrement in congestion around toll plazas.
* Fuel saving – In electronic toll collection system deceleration, acceleration and idling is completely eliminated. This helps in saving fuel for future purposes. Not only this, it also plays a vital role in reduction of operating cost of the vehicles.
* Enhanced cash handing – In electronic toll collection system there is no cash transaction involved so cash handling is reduced so difficulties with cash handling is eliminated. This aids in enhanced audit control by centralizing user accounts.
* Payment flexibility – In electronic toll collection system, the commuters do not have to worry about searching for cash for the toll payment. Since they set up an account for ETC usage, which gives customers the flexibility of paying their toll bill with cards.
* Congestion reduction — The toll transaction rate is highly increased due to the use of Toll Collection systems. Since the vehicles do not stop at the toll facility. This has reduced the congestion of the toll plaza in a considerable manner. The number of vehicles waiting in the queue reduces and hence the average waiting time is also reduced.
* Enhanced data collection — Information such as vehicle count of the day, date, time etc can be obtained due to the deployment of this electronic toll collection system.
In this age, wide range of deployment of electronic toll collection systems (ETC) has a tremendous effect upon the toll industry worldwide. Tolling techniques such as high-occupancy toll (HOT) lanes would have been not possible without this technology. The ability to price transportation by time of day, especially in urban areas, offers many opportunities to improve travel behavior.