|A toll booth to collect BOT road fee in Quảng Trị. — VNS Photo Phước Bửu|Viet Nam News
QUẢNG TRỊ — Transport authorities in central Quảng Trị Province are planning to collect tolls according to the actual distance commuters travel, which could be a breakthrough initiative for Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) roads nationwide.
The Quảng Trị Department of Transportation has requested the approval of the local People’s Committee for its proposal.
According to department director Lê Như Tiến, this method would be fairer to commuters than the current system on BOT roads, reducing 70 per cent of total fees for drivers in the province’s Đông Hà City, Triệu Phong, Hướng Hóa, Cam Lộ, Đắkrông districts.
Commuters from Quảng Trị Town and Hải Lăng District would pay 60 per cent less while those in Vĩnh Linh and Gio Linh districts would cut their toll payments by 20 per cent.
Road users throughout Việt Nam have complained bitterly about the price of the tolls and their non-progressive nature. Fees are collected at the same rate for those who travel on an entire road or part of the road, while some toll booths are located in places where drivers are forced to pay a toll for a road they don’t use.
According to Quảng Trị authorities, such opposition can endanger social stability and should be handled wisely.
Recently, commuters in central Nghệ An, Hà Tĩnh, and Tiền Giang voiced their anger by paying the toll fee with small change, aiming to slow traffic around the booth to a crawl. Some even put notes in plastic bottles or soaked the notes in water before they arrived at the booth. — VNS