Tolling inquiry gives motorists a chance to have their say

The State’s peak motoring body has thrown its support behind a Parliamentary Inquiry which would give Queensland motorists the chance to have a say on south east Queensland’s (SEQ) toll roads and the ways they could be improved.

The inquiry into toll roads, prices and customer service was passed on Wednesday, a move RACQ said opened the discussion for cheaper tolls.

RACQ spokesperson Paul Turner said the review would give motorists an opportunity to raise their concerns about tolls and hopefully put measures in place to improve pricing for drivers.

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“This inquiry needs to look at options for discounts, incentives or bundling of tolls to improve value for money and use of these roads,” Mr Turner said.

“While the numbers of complaints to the toll road operator Transurban have dropped recently, all too often we hear from members that tolls are too expensive.

“Transport already makes up the third largest household expense and motorists just can’t afford to pay more. Unfortunately, we’re going to see prices for most SEQ toll roads go up again on 1 July.”

Mr Turner said a recent Tolling Customer Ombudsman (TCO) report had shown an improvement in the number of complaints received.  Between September 2017 and February 2018 the ombudsman received an average of 32 complaints a month about GoVia’s (now Linkt) customer service, a 32 percent drop from the previous year.

“Initiatives to help motorists streamline the process have been positive, with the toll operator installing clearer signage and changing the colours to blue and gold to make it clear to drivers when they were entering a toll road and what they would be charged,” he said.

“We also support more recent customer-focussed improvements including a ‘first time forgiveness’ program that waives toll invoice fees for some first-time offenders and the issuing of only one demand notice for tolls incurred in the space of a few days.”