FASTags aim to quicken pace of journey through toll booths

FASTags aim to quicken pace of journey through toll booths

News:

  1. According to the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, FASTag users can experience ‘near’ non-stop movement at toll plazas on various national highways.

 

Important facts:

2. Earlier, the government has introduced the radio frequency identification device(RFID) based FASTag system for vehicles crossing toll gates on the country’s highway network.

3. The RFID card has seen an average uptake of two lakh vehicles per month and their use currently accounts for 12.5% or five lakh transactions of the total 40 lakh transactions recorded per day at all toll booths across the country.

4. FASTag system:

  • FASTag system is used to avoid stopping to pay a toll tax.
  • The tag with a quick response (QR) code and an identification number is affixed to the windscreen of a vehicle.
  • The tag is linked to a user’s FASTag account with the bank of his or her choice.
  • Once the vehicle passes through a toll booth, the user receives an SMS alert regarding the charge debited to his or her account.
  • Trucks and taxis account for the biggest users of FASTags unlike personal car owners whose movement is most likely to be restricted to city limits.
  • Although, the technology being presently used in India but still requires one to slow down to a speed of 10 km per hour as the toll plaza antennae has a range of only six meters.
  • To encourage the use of FASTags, NHAI refunds 5% of the total monthly transactions.
  • The device was rolled out in April 2016, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways made it mandatory from  December, 2017 for all new cars and trucks to be fitted with a FASTag before sold.
  • The Ministry has also proposed to make FASTag compulsory for all commercial vehicles seeking a national permit.

5. Suggestions:

  • Need free flow of vehicles, resulting in an increase in return on investment for transporters as well as bringing down logistics cost.
  • Need a system that will allow movement which is free of human interventions, lanes as well as boom barriers.
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