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Regular checks throughout Germany ensure that the truck toll is properly paid.
Toll enforcement and the punishment of violations
Toll enforcement and the punishment of violations are the responsibility of the Federal Office for Goods Transport (BAG). Toll Collect has provided BAG with the technology needed for an effective enforcement system so that BAG can enforce correct booking of the toll, thereby ensuring that all toll payers are treated equally. With the aid of this system, BAG can determine if a vehicle is has an obligation to pay toll and if it has met this obligation fully, partially, or not at all.
The control system distinguishes between automatic enforcement through control bridges, enforcement by stationary and mobile teams, and company-level enforcement. This combination guarantees comprehensive, continuous enforcement of the requirement to pay toll and allows the control system to be constantly adjusted to meet prevailing circumstances.
300 permanently installed gantries are used to enforce toll requirements without interrupting traffic flow. Sensors on the control bridges scan the silhouettes of passing trucks to determine whether they are required to pay toll. A camera takes several digital photos of the truck's number plate. At the same time, DSRC communication is used to determine whether the vehicle is equipped with an On-Board unit. If so, the On-Board Unit transmits the current toll collection data to the control bridge, where it is compared with the control data that has been recorded.
If the vehicle does not have an On-Board Unit, its number plate is compared against a list of all manual log-on data. In this way, it is determined whether the driver has paid the correct toll based on the number of axles on the truck, its pollution class and the route under review.
If the automatic review determines the toll has not been properly paid, the data is transmitted to enforcement headquarters for manual review. If the results of the automatic review are confirmed, the data is stored and provided to BAG to punish the offense.
Once it has clearly been determined that the toll was paid, the data is deleted immediately.
Stationary inspections are carried out by BAG officers at selected parking lots near the control bridges. The control teams receive wireless data on vehicles that may not have properly paid toll. This occurs seconds after the truck passes under the control bridge. The team then pulls the truck over for a detailed inspection.
BAG deploys approx. 300 control vehicles nationwide to enforce toll collection.
The enforcement teams use infrared technology to determine whether passing trucks are logged onto the automatic system and if their vehicle information has been properly entered. The teams can check manual log-on data directly with Toll Collect headquarters by using a PC with mobile telecommunications equipment. If BAG determines a toll has not been properly paid, it can immediately pull the truck over.
BAG employees perform company-level enforcement by randomly checking freight transport companies on-site to determine if they have paid the required toll.
Consequences of toll infringement
Where incontrovertible evidence of non-payment or incomplete payment of the toll is established, the amount of toll due for the travelled route will be retrospectively charged, and the defaulting user is also liable to payment of a fine. Where the actual route cannot be determined, a retrospective charge will be made for a nominal distance of 500 km (312.5 miles). During the enforcement check, the required input data, including vehicle registration or toll-rate class, will be recorded and summary proceedings will be instituted by BAG against the defaulter.