More and more tollways and tunnels are becoming cashless.
E-tags are not designed for use on motorcycles. Attempts to design a safe motorcycle e-tag have stalled.
Until an appropriate e-tag is available, motorcycles should be:-
- Not charged an administrative fees
- Free to use tollways, as they are in Victoria
In January 2009, the RTA admitted failure of E-Tags in use for motorcycles and scooters when it annouced to the media that motorcycles would not need to carry an e-tag across the harbour bridge or harbour tunnel. (access the article here).
The informal annoucement by the RTA displayed many of the ill considered approaches of the entire e-tag strategy for motorcyclists.
1. Decision making on the run.
The "announcement" was not formally annouced, it wasn't mentioned on the RTA website and the peak motorcycling body (the MCC of NSW) was not aware or consulted on it. The annoucement is yet to be verified.
2. Illogical decision making
"However, the RTA encourages motorcyclists to travel with their tag as they will need it when travelling on Sydney's other toll roads."
Forgoing E-Tags on only 2 of Sydney's 8 toll roads is illogical. It is unclear whether the RTA tolling system is flawed compared to those on the other toll roads or whether the RTA is simply looking after it's own bad PR and leaving motorcyclists to deal with the additional charges and paperchase when using other toll roads.
This behaviour by the RTA is typical of it's approach to the whole question of E-Tags and Tolling where motorcylces and scooters are a discriminated minority that are left to deal with substandard service, higher complexity and imposed safety issues.