Massachusetts Motorists May Have a New Way to Poll Tolls

In addition to the recent text-messaging ban for drivers, Massachusetts may soon institute other changes to the road. “Open-road” tolling is one of those changes, and Governor Deval Patrick says highway officials will begin testing it soon. According to Patrick, the tests will be staged in lanes at the Massachusetts Turnpike exchange at Route 128 and on the Mystic Tobin Bridge.

This new tolling system would allow drivers to pass under a scanner that would assess a toll rather than stopping or fumbling for cash. Massachusetts drivers who use FastLane transponders will still be able to pay their toll that way, but the scanners can read license plates and send a bill to the driver or debit their account.

Patrick says open-road tolling will improve customer service; however, critics worry that it could lead to adding more tolls to roads that don’t currently have them.

Source: Patrick: Mass may test new tolling within months, Boston Globe, March 3, 2010
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