Electronic system streamlines toll collection

14:22, September 29, 2010      

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Drivers from Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei can now drive on 41 toll roads running across the three adjacent regions without stopping to pay the toll, and an electronic network will charge vehicles automatically when they pass through the tollgate.

The electronic system, which was officially launched on Sept. 28, covers all tollgates on 15 highways in Beijing, 13 tollgates on six highways in Tianjin and 24 tollgates on 20 highways in Hebei Province. A car from Beijing can pass the highway in Tianjin without stopping to pay. The system will collect the toll fee electronically and settle up across provinces.

The Electronic Toll Collection (ETC) system includes three parts: an electronic tag fixed on the windshield, a reader fixed on the road and an antenna. Each time a vehicle with the electronic tag passes the tollgate, the reader will record it automatically without a driver stopping to pay in cash, which is the current form of charging throughout China. It is common to see long queues outside of tollgates on major highways.

The electronic network is the first pilot among Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, which form the main body of the area surrounding the Bo Sea, one of three major coastal economic zones in China. The project was initiated in 2007.

"The ETC system can not only promote saving energy, land and costs, but also enhances the efficiency," said Feng Zhenglin, the deputy minister of the Ministry of Transport.

As a transition for tollgates that do not have the electronic network fully set up, drivers can use an electronic tag on their windshield to pay the toll, but they must stop and have the tag scanned by personnel at the tollbooth.

By Liu Hui People's Daily Online


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