LAST December 1, all toll expressways in the country started implementing cashless toll transactions to motorists using their highways. This is in consonance with the government's effort of preventing the spread of the corona virus and easing the flow of vehicles passing through toll booths.
The directive to tollways companies to implement such cashless scheme using the Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) came from the Department of Transportation (DOTr) in coordination with the Tollways Regulatory Board (TRB).
Tollways corporations expressed their support to the new normal in toll fees collection and expressed their willingness to abide by the DOTr's order. They streamlined their workforces that some of them were replaced by sensors that give the go signal to open toll barriers.
Prior to the December 1 deadline for its full implementation, there came heavy traffic of vehicles on roads leading to booths where RFID stickers are installed. To date, there are still quite a number of motorists queuing for the said stickers that are with sensors for tollgates to read.
While there are already a great number of RFID- installed vehicles cruising our expressways, traffic jams do still prevail on toll booths, generating the ire of motorist as well as politicians who had wasted time too due to heavy traffic build ups.
Traffic congestion at toll booths are caused by technical glitches such as sensors not detecting the stickers, sensors that exact wrong toll fees amount, barriers not opening and others. What are supposed to be helping smoothen the flow of vehicular traffic are the ones that are causing the congestion this time.
Senator Sherwin Gatchalian and his Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian are fuming mad over the failures of the RIFD toll fees collection system and the traffic it has causing. Not spared from these is their home city which has called the attention of the management of the North Luzon Expressway (NLEx).
Mayor Gatchalian has demanded for an explanation on the glitches and the timetable for these to be solved by the NLEx. He also demands apology for the riding public in view of the hassles the RFID is causing.
The NLEx' inaction led to the suspension of the business permit issued by the city which halted the collection of toll fees by the expressway management. The toll holiday is justice being served to motorists who suffered delays and hassles in their travel after passing through RFID toll barriers.
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