Johannesburg - More than a month after implementation, the e-toll system has left road users dumbfounded.
Complicated bills, inconsistent billing methods and incorrect accounts have led to Gauteng motorists deeming the system an incomprehensible mess.
Garsfontein, Tshwane, resident Elizabeth Bojé visits Joburg twice a month. In preparation for the e-toll system, she bought an e-tag for her Honda Jazz and loaded money onto her account.
Two days ago, she was shocked to receive a bill (which is not normally sent to e-tag holders) for a vehicle that doesn’t belong to her.
On the picture attached to the bill of R18.63 was a white Hyundai truck with workers on the back. It was taken near the William Nicol Drive off-ramp.
CLEARLY SANRAL’S MISTAKE
“It would be useful to have such a truck because my boot is small, but that truck does not belong to me,” she said.
The bill is made out to Bojé, with her correct address, vehicle registration and identity numbers, but the vehicle in the picture doesn’t have the same registration number as hers.
Her registration plate starts with “WHL” and that of the truck with “WLH”.
Bojé reported this to her local e-toll centre and was given a two-page document to fill out. The document was to be signed by a commissioner of oaths.
“It’s their mistake, not mine. I reported the matter and they noted it. I will not do anything more,” Bojé said.
Vusi Mona, spokesman for the SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral), said that by law they were required to bill the e-toll fees to the owner of the vehicle as reflected in the eNatis database.
“If the details of the owner were not changed, as is required by law, the owner would need to follow the dispute process, which is either a nomination or a representation process (which is the forms that need to be completed and the documents that are required).
Renata Ford, who is not tagged, used the e-tag calculator on Sanral’s website to calculate her bill. The calculator indicated she had to pay R13.79. When her bill arrived, it totalled R85.98.
She was told that an untagged user pays on average R17 per gantry. She recalculated but still could not reach the same total as Sanral.
The Star’s sister paper, the Pretoria News, looked at bills received by untagged users recently.
One bill showed each trip on a separate bill, while another had a list of itemised trips on one bill.
While users continue scratching their heads, the Freedom Front Plus and the DA called on road users to send them their complaints.
ALL THE INS AND OUTS OF E-TOLLING
- Road users who don’t want to register for an e-toll account may pay at an e-toll customer service centre located along e-road routes. They may also phone 0800 SANRAL (726 725).
- When registering an e-toll account, the plate number of the vehicle will be required. You will then receive an account number and a PIN.
- Registration is done at customer service centres or by phoning the call centre. Road users may register on www.sanral.co.za.
- Those who choose not to register an e-toll account and want to pay their e-toll fees must do so within a seven-day period.
- If payment is not made after seven days, the matter will be handed over to the violations processing centre.
- If you aren’t registered and don’t have an e-tag, and don’t pay within seven days, you will be classified as an “alternate user”. They don’t qualify for discounts.
- Motorists with outstanding e-toll accounts will still be able to renew licences.
- Road users may maintain a minimum positive balance in the account.
- Account holders will receive an invoice and statement twice a month.
- Possible outstanding fees may be checked at a customer service centre or via the call centre.
- Repeat offenders are identified by special cameras.
- Incorrect transactions should be reported to the call centre, the customer service centre or via the website.