RFID Payment at Toll Booths: Still Problematic After a Year?

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Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1673598921850 Rfid Issues After 1 Year Featured

(Photo Credit: Reddit)

What was once regarded as the answer to traffic congestion at toll plazas, the RFID lanes have not risen to expectations.

The radio frequency identification (RFID) system at toll plazas is celebrating its one-year anniversary this Sunday (Jan 15). Back then it was highly regarded to be a game changer for peak hour traffic. In theory, it's a seamless system that would see the end of long queues at toll plazas and save everyone time and money.

In reality, however, it hasn't lived up to expectations, with many users citing detection issues at gantries or faulty tags as major pain points in their experiences using the RFID lanes. It was tolerated in its infancy but almost a year on, many are starting to get fed up, opting for the tried and tested alternatives such as the SmartTag and Touch n Go methods instead.

The question often brought up is whether the blame for the system's failure lies with the government or with the road users. The installation of the tags leaves room for error as there are various specific dos and don'ts one has to consider if they're doing it themselves. Road users that do not follow these guidelines and installed these tags incorrectly have been unable to get past the RFID gantries, causing congestion as they try and reverse out of the gantries and into other lanes. 

Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1673599915026 Fitting Rfid Tag(Photo Credit: Tat Yon)

However, how efficient can a system be if it leaves so much room for user error? Additionally, there have been reports that vehicles with tags that have been fitted in accordance with the guidelines are still facing the same problems.

The government is very well aware of the issue and some have even responded to users on social media. Replying to a user expressing his frustrations using the RFID lanes, transport minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook said that the matter will be discussed with works minister Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi. 

We can only hope that the system is improved on sooner rather than later. It has always had its criticisms, even before it was implemented but action or response to improve it hasn't been great. What's most frustrating is the fact that if done right, it very well could be the answer to traffic congestion at toll booths. It's just quite not there yet. 

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