Motorists hit with fines due to Dartford Crossing payment change
Highways Agency figures show 1.5m motorists have been fined for non-payment of the Dart-charge
Figures released by the Highways Agency reveal that 1.5 million motorists were sent an automatic penalty charge notice in 2015 for not paying the online charge for using the Dartford Crossing.
The Highways Agency implemented the new payment system in 2014 after removing the toll booths in order to make travelling over the M25 Dartford Crossing faster and more efficient.
The crossing is now equipped with Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology and drivers have until midnight on the following day to pay the charge. Cars are required to pay an increased charge of £2.50; larger vehicles must pay up to £6; but motorcyclists get to ride over for free. Between 10pm and 6am, the Dartford Crossing is free for all.
Motorists who have used the Dartford Crossing must now visit the Government’s online payment website (gov.uk/dart-charge) within the time period mentioned above, otherwise they will find themselves hit with a £70 fine; reduced to £35 if it is paid within 14 days. Payment can also be made over the phone or at a Payzone terminal.
According to the Highways Agency, 1.5m drivers were caught out by the change in 2015, potentially costing motorists up to £2million. In addition, more than 340,000 foreign motorists found a nasty fine waiting for them on their distant doorsteps after visiting the UK in 2015.
The Highways Agency has said that first time ‘offenders’ will have their fine waived if they pay the original toll charge within 14 days.
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