End of the road for tolls
16 December 2008
Author: John Challen
Statistics from an AA survey have reinforced the view that road pricing is unpopular, following the Manchester C-charge no-vote.
Talking at a seminar at the Institute of Engineering and Technology, Edmund King, president of the AA revealed the poll's results that were generated by a panel of over 11,000 AA members. The survey concluded that 65% of drivers would not use high occupancy toll lanes, even if the speed limit was increased to 80mph.
Just 3% of the panel said they would use the lanes all of the time, while over 50% of those questioned thought that raising the speed limit was a dangerous idea.
The survey, which took the opinions of over 11,000 AA members, also highlighted the growing opposition to road pricing and congestion charges in the North West. In April, 72% of drivers were against such schemes; now that figure has risen to 77%.
The results of the survey coincided with the fifth anniversary of the M6 Toll, another route that highlighted the increased opposition to road pricing. The AA said that compared with the equivalent period last year, traffic flows between July and September 2008 were down 12%. More popular solutions to congestions on the motorways seemed to be opening hard shoulders to traffic, a plan of which the results are expected early next year.