All Electronic Tolling Continues to Gain Steam Amidst Pandemic
By Lindsay Wood March 31, 2021
As states and provinces across the U.S. and Canada craft reopening plans, fleets are re-examining how to adjust. Ninety percent of tollways ceased cash collections due to the pandemic. So, for toll management, the choice is clear—all electronic tolling (AET).
AET works via a vehicle-mounted transponder or license plate identification through video. Electronic tolling technology has been available for years, yet it’s often accompanied by cash lanes, either operated by a person or electronically. This collection method is extremely effective for toll facilitators because they save on operating costs, less land is needed, and it assists with revenue collection and enforcement.
Pre-pandemic, the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission and other major thoroughfares were scheduled to cease cash payments and implement AET. However, the necessity of AET has sped up timelines and the Pennsylvania Turnpike has announced it’s immediately ceasing cash tolling. Illinois also went cashless during the early days of the pandemic. Now, it’s made that change permanent.
Other authorities are also considering ceasing cashless tolling, and we expect it to grow for years to come as additional areas upgrade their technology. Now is a great time to get your fleet ready.
Benefits of electronic toll management
Safety: There are clear benefits for fleets beyond the pandemic. Without having to reduce speeds or merge into a toll lane, there is less opportunity for rear-end collisions, which are common at toll booths.
Violations avoidance: With automatic payments there is no missing tolls, thus eliminating violations.
Sustainability: AET is a greener choice because it contributes to decreased congestion since vehicles no longer stop at toll booths. It’s estimated it reduces the environmental impact by 30%.
Administrative ease: AET eliminates the need for drivers to report expenses, allowing increased productivity on other tasks. Fleet offices have the benefit of consolidated billing and visibility into all toll activity.