Hyderabad: In a major development, all the lanes in the Outer Ring Road (ORR) have been upgraded to FASTag ones. Officials said that the municipal authority had successfully tested electronic Highway Traffic Management (HTMS), Toll Management System (TMS) and all lanes had been FASTag enabled now.
FASTag is the pan-India Electronic Toll Collection (ETC) system promoted under the National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) Programme of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH), and it is being rolled out as Radio Frequency Identification Device (RFID)- based ETC system on ORR. Motorists have to purchase the RFID card enabled with reader strips and affix the same on the vehicle windscreen. Upon scanning the reader strip at the toll booth, the data will be sent to the central server, which immediately flashes the entry and exit point of the particular vehicle.
The boom barriers at the toll gates will give clearance to vehicles after scanning. The system also has smart features that will automatically detect commuters who misuse the system and charge them the maximum possible toll fee on the ORR. As part of this, trials and tests have been conducted jointly with the present toll collection agency Eagle Infra, system integrator Efkon and banker ICICI.
According to a HMDA official, the Centre has set a deadline to make all highway lanes FASTag friendly for a hassle-free journey. The HMDA has been gearing up since 18 months and successfully completed trials on Tuesday. The Official said that to safeguard the interest of the commuters, the municipal authority had also installed CCTV cameras at 19 interchanges across the 158 kilometre ORR stretch. However, the toll management also will have manual counters for commuters whose vehicles are not FASTag enabled.
A senior official said that taking previous technical glitches into account, the municipal authority had laid decided 100 MBPS internet cables across the ORR. He said that since all lanes in the toll plaza have the e-toll facility, commuters would have a hassle-free journey.
The official said that since several commuters were not aware of the FASTags and e-toll system, the HMDA would raise awareness since manual queues would irk the vehicle owners with RFID tags.
He also said that the HMDA had been contemplating setting up FASTag counters at toll plazas to facilitate commuters and brief them about the advantages in using it. The official said that the municipal authority would hold a meeting with bankers in the regard. However, double deduction at entry and exit points has been a major issue which remains unresolved.