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E-toll claims: Readers respond

2013-08-05 07:00

WE’RE NOT BUYING IT SANRAL: Many Wheels24 expressed their concerns at Sanral’s dubious e-toll affordability claims. Image: SAPA

Wheels24 reported that the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) claimed 83% of drivers would pay only R100 or less a month if they register for an e-tag.
Sanral also stated that only a fraction of users of the Gauteng Road Improvement Project (GFIP) highways wouldl pay the capped monthly maximum or R450, assuming they had an e-tag. Then added the threat that those who don't could pay twice as much.

This is what Sanral’s plate recognition system claimed drivers will pay monthly:
• 82.83% less than R100
• 10.10% R101 - R200
• 1.82% R201 - R300
• 0.59% R300 - R450

Wheels24 readers sent us a many emails in response to Sanral's claims and believe us, they ain't happy... sensitive Sanral shareholders should probably not read on...

Sydney Gericke: "To have checked 2.5-million vehicles and do the calculation as per the article, one can assume that this data is available per vehicle tracked during the research period which should have covered a month.

"Should Sanral feel confident about their claims why don't they publish all the car registrations on to a website and allow users to search the data based on their own number plate details and see for themselves what the costs would be.

"Many drivers regularly using a specific route to and from work. This may help users of the road to get their minds around the real costs rather than defaulting to the highest monthly cost."

Charles Robinson: "When will Sanral get it through there thick heads, that the system is corrupt, flawed and inefficient. Most people understand that roads need to be maintained but not with e-tolls."

Kerri Niemandt:
"Are you luring us into a false sense of security so you can push the prices up two months down the line? South Africans are struggling as it is, what about the people that can't afford R100 because petrol costs an extra R100 a month. Whatever, Sanral. Forget it!"

Linki De Jongh-Brown: "Even if accurate, which I do not believe it will be, I do not like the idea of registering and for Sanral to have access to my bank account.

"It's already an issue to obtain a refund from the municipalities for over-payment. What issues would there be with e-toll? Oh never mind, we will credit you for another month... then next month comes and another debit goes off etc. and the credit or refund never happens."

Sam Murray (we like your maths, Sam, we challenge Vusi Mona to answer you!) said:
"If 4700 represents 59% of vehicles then 83% would be 659 832 vehicles and 10% would be 80 458 and 1.82% would be 14 498.

"4700 + 659 832+ 80 458 + 14 498 = 759 448 vehicles. Also 59+83+10+1.82 does not equal 100%. So where does the figure of 2.5-million vehicles come from?"

Wolfgang Gruner said: "Vusi Mona claims that we should accept e-tolls because they won't cost us that much. "Firstly, does anyone believe that Sanral will keep these proposed initial tariffs? I believe that as soon as (if) they get an established, registered customer base and they realise they aren't able to collect the returns they hoped for, they will most certainly hike these tariffs substantially.

"Secondly, it is also not a simple argument about how much the tolls will cost the user. It's about how that money will be used. Of my R450, how much will go towards road maintenance and upgrades? Even with their most optimistic projections of user compliance, the system would be way too inefficient. Most of my money would go to administrative and maintenance costs (and profits) of the tolling operations.

"The fact that Sanral continues to waste millions of rands on advertising proves this point. I keep reading their press releases and documents in the hope that they can prove that they have considered the tolling option with due diligence but all that these documents show are the most feeble of arguments. These are arguments that will not hold water under the slightest scrutiny.

"Sanral count your losses and scrap this fruitless plan now."
Read more on:    sanral  |  south africa  |  wheels24  |  etolls  |  etags

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