The Federal Office for Goods Transport (BAG) and Toll Collect will be providing information at the NUFAM trade fair in Karlsruhe regarding innovations and changes for transport companies resulting from the extension of the truck toll to all federal trunk roads. The joint stand can be found in Hall 3, Stand 309. A national info tour through the 14 cities in Germany is beginning in Karlsruhe at the same time, which will be completed by mid-2018.
The law to expand the truck toll to all federal trunk roads starting 1 July 2018 came into force at the end of March 2017. With the extension, the toll road network will be around two and a half times larger. Currently, a total of 15,000 kilometres of motorway and selected federal trunk roads is subject to charge. The expansion of the toll requirement means that many more companies will be using the toll system.
Toll Collect has been contracted with the technical upgrade of the truck toll system. The goal is to ensure that toll payments function reliably and simply, as usual, for transport companies and drivers. The processes are being designed so that there are tangible benefits for customers and their operational processes are not negatively affected. The upgrade is a technical challenge, as it will be implemented during ongoing operation. The changes will be introduced in stages. They will involve all of the truck toll system’s parts, from satellite-supported automated toll collection and manual log-on to enforcement.
The automatic log-on with the on-board unit (OBU) will be upgraded as, compared to motorways, federal trunk roads are subject to many changes more often and more quickly – roadworks, road closures, no-through roads. This means that the data required for toll collection will change more often and at shorter notice than previously. Therefore, in future, the on-board units will transmit the trip data and the vehicle characteristics relevant for toll collection to the data centre. Only then will the toll be calculated there. Toll amounts are currently calculated in the on-board unit and then sent to the computing centre. The changeover will begin over the next few weeks and the process will take up to the second quarter of 2018. The conversion will be apparent from a changed display on the on-board unit. This means that the more than one million on-board units that have already been installed for automatic toll collection can still be used. The drivers and companies do not need to do anything. Garage servicing will not be required.
Toll Collect will continue to rely on the principles of data avoidance and data economy in order to guarantee the highest level of data protection. Even following the upgrade, under the German Federal Trunk Road Toll Act (BFStrMG), toll data must be processed and used exclusively for the purposes of the BFStrMG, i.e. for toll collection.
Companies that join the toll system from 2018 onwards should decide in advance how they want to pay the toll charges. For companies that frequently use toll roads, it is best to pay tolls using automatic log-on via an OBU.
Manual log-on will be simpler in future. From the end of 2017, it will be possible to log-on online via smartphones, tablets and stationary PCs. An app will then make it easier to log on with mobile devices from spring 2018 onwards. Manual log-on will also be possible at 1,100 toll terminals, the majority of which will be located at border crossings and important traffic hubs and which will gradually replace the previous 3,600 old terminals.
In the future, enforcement pillars will enforce compliance with the toll requirement – in addition to mobile enforcement by the Federal Office for Goods Transport – on federal trunk roads. The first of the blue pillars, which are almost four metres high, have already been constructed.