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The NHAI (National Highways Authority of India) has issued new guidelines to be followed by all toll booths in India. The new regulations issued by NHAI could make waiting times at toll booths almost non-existent. The main rule imposed by NHAI is that the waiting time for each vehicle shouldn't exceed 10 seconds.
India is a vast country with a large network of highways. The total length of national highways in India back in 2019 was 1,32,500 kilometres. In addition to these, there are state highways. The importance of these highways in the country cannot be emphasized enough.
A vast majority of these highways have been developed and maintained by contractors and they are allowed to impose a toll on vehicles using these highways. However, toll booths have in the past been a pain in the wrong place, especially when the traffic was higher than usual.
A few toll booths in the country would have queues extending for more than a kilometre in length. Tendering the exact change was not always possible, and this simply meant more time was spent in the cash transaction. To counter this, NHAI introduced FASTag and made it mandatory.
Despite having FASTag, the queue used to be too long at times. In a bid to make toll booth transactions faster, the National Highways Authority of India has now issued some regulations. The most important regulation is that servicing a vehicle shouldn't take more than 10 seconds.
10 seconds is a decent amount of time for each vehicle to be served. In addition to this, the new regulations state that the queue of vehicles shouldn't exceed 100 metres in length. In order to make this rule effective, toll booths have been instructed to paint a yellow marker 100 metres before the toll booth.
If the length of the queue of vehicles extends beyond the yellow line, the vehicles in front should be allowed to pass free of cost, without deducting the toll fee. These new regulations are expected to make the toll operators more accountable.
Considering an average vehicle length of 4.5 metres, 100 metres can accommodate around 22 cars. This should certainly make queues a lot shorter than they currently are. Alongside announcing these new regulations, the NHAI has announced that 96 percent of the vehicles have successfully adopted FASTag.
Thoughts On NHAI Issuing New Toll Regulations To Cut Down Waiting Time At Toll Plazas
The regulations issued by the NHAI make complete sense and should do the greater good for travelers. However, we have our doubts about it being followed honestly. In order to comply with the rules, toll operators might paint a yellow line. However, unless there's electronic monitoring in place, we're unsure if the vehicles will be allowed to pass by free of cost. Kudos to the NHAI though for bringing in these new regulations.