Give 48-hour grace period to settle ERP violations

Cars travelling though an ERP gantry near the State Courts, on July 13, 2016.
Cars travelling though an ERP gantry near the State Courts, on July 13, 2016.PHOTO: ST FILE

When a motorist passes through an Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) gantry without paying the charge, the Land Transport Authority's (LTA) current practice is to send a notice within a few days of the violation to the motorist, informing him that he must pay the ERP charge and an administrative fee of $10 by a certain date.

The LTA should be cognisant that not all motorists deliberately avoid paying the ERP charge, since it just means eventually having to pay several times the unpaid ERP charge.

For example, a motorist may have placed a free parking coupon inside the in-vehicle unit, and subsequently forgot to replace it with a CashCard before passing through an ERP gantry.

To give the benefit of the doubt to such motorists, I suggest that the LTA give a 48-hour grace period from the time of the ERP violation, during which the motorist can settle the unpaid ERP charge without the additional administrative fee.

The LTA can follow up with the current practice once the 48 hours have passed.

Such practices are common in other countries such as Australia, and will be of great relief to motorists here.

Pavithran Vidyadharan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 11, 2019, with the headline 'Give 48-hour grace period to settle ERP violations'. Print Edition | Subscribe