Survey: Increased support for road charging

Department for Transport study shows growing support for IT-based charging system

A SURVEY commissioned by the Department for Transport (DfT) has found more than 50 per cent of the UK's motorists believe road charging should be based on usage.

The results from the survey, released yesterday, showed more than eighty per cent of respondees thought congestion was a serious problem for the UK.

Over ninety per cent said the government needed to take urgent action to tackle the problem.

However, a countrywide road-charging system would result in a plethora of hi-tech numberplate recognition cameras, needed to collate the relevant information and subsequent road charges - as used to conduct London's Congestion Charge. The necessary increase in IT technology would come at a time when the new Coalition is trying to reduce the number of privacy-invading cameras. 

"The department uses opinion surveys to provide up-to-date and reliable information on public attitudes to transport issues," said a DfT spokesperson.

"It has ruled out for the duration of this Parliament national road pricing on existing roads and any preparation for such schemes beyond that time.

"But for new infrastructure the government will consider all options for funding, including private sector investment and tolling."

Only one in 10 respondents to the DFT's survey disagreed with any form of road pricing policy.

The figures show an increase in support for a road charging based on last year's results.

Via The Register