FASTags, toll plazas could soon be replaced by GPS-based toll collections

Currently, electronic toll plazas deduct toll fees through RFID technology called FASTag from vehicles across India. FASTag was introduced as mandator
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Toll plaza Delhi Mumbai Expressway
The Centre will soon replace physical toll plazas, like this one on the Delhi-Mumbai Expressway, and replace them with GPS-based toll collection system. The new technology will also make FASTags redundant. (Raj K Raj/HT Photo) (HT_PRINT)
Toll plaza Delhi Mumbai Expressway
The Centre will soon replace physical toll plazas, like this one on the Delhi-Mumbai Expressway, and replace them with GPS-based toll collection system. The new technology will also make FASTags redundant. (Raj K Raj/HT Photo)

FASTags, toll plazas could soon become redundant as the Centre plans to introduce new toll collection technology in India. Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said that the government aims to launch GPS-based toll collection system which will replace the old method of collecting toll fees from vehicles. Currently, physical toll plazas set up on highways across the country deducts toll fees through RFID-based technology called FASTag. It was introduced as the mandatory method of toll collection almost three years ago.

Nitin Gadkari said that the new GPS-based toll collection system, which is likely to be implemented from March next year, is aimed to reduce traffic congestion at toll plazas. Interestingly, FASTag toll collection system was introduced in February 2021 for similar reason. Gadkari also said that the new toll collection method will also help charge fees from commuters based on the distance traveled by them.

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Addressing an event on Wednesday (December 20), Gadkari said, "The government is looking at new technologies, including GPS-based toll systems to replace toll plazas in the country... we will start new GPS satellite-based toll collection across the country by March next year."

Also Read : Selling your car? Here's what to do with the FASTag attached

How GPS-based toll collection works:

The new GPS-based toll collection system will scan vehicle number plates and charge toll fees. Gadkari said that the Centre has already conducted test runs of the new system at two places. The system will use automatic number plate recognition system through cameras while a vehicle is on the move. The number plates will be linked to accounts from where the toll fee will be deducted based on the distance it has travelled.

Also Read : Not sure if you have completed your FASTag KYC? Here's how to check and update

How GPS-based toll collection will be different from FASTags:

Currently, most of the highways across India use FASTag to deduct toll fees. An RFID-enabled barrier at toll plazas read the FASTag IDs pasted on vehicles and charge fees based on distance between two toll plazas. The system requires vehicles to stop at toll plazas to get scanned. This often creates long queues, failing the very reason why FASTags were introduced in the first place.

The introduction of FASTags reduced the average waiting time for vehicles at toll plazas to about 47 seconds from 8 minutes back in 2018-19. Yet, with faulty scanners or vehicles without balance on FASTags often cause long queues at toll plazas. The new GPD-based toll collection will not require vehicles to stop at any point. Cameras set up along the highway will be used to scan number plates and deduct the toll amount.

First Published Date: 21 Dec 2023, 11:00 AM IST
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