No fooling: M-Flow fines waived to April 1
The Highways Department has annulled the substantial fines imposed on motorists who have failed to pay tolls under the new M-Flow collection system, says Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob.
The decision applies to the period Feb 15 to March 31. The move followed a request last week by the Foundation for Consumers urging the government to review the fines.
Many motorists were not aware they were subject to paying a fine 10 times the actual amount of the toll if they failed to pay within two days.
Some have written on social media about their experiences, criticising the Transport Ministry for not providing adequate information about the new system and not giving them enough time to pay fines.
Mr Saksayam said the cancellation applies to the M-Flow toll collection system at Thap Chang 1, Thap Chang 2, Thanyaburi 1 and Thanyaburi 2 on Motorway No 9.
The barricade-free M-Flow system, designed to reduce traffic build-up at toll plazas, ran on a trial basis from last October to Feb 15.
Mr Saksayam said that from April 1, motorists using the M-Flow system will have seven days to pay tolls before being subject to a fine.
Highways Department chief Sarawut Songsivilai said he met system developers, banks and advisers to resolve all outstanding fines and extend the no-fine period from two to seven days.
The department is also working on improving public understanding about the M-Flow system.
Naruemon Mekborisut, a deputy director at consumer rights protection group Foundation for Consumers, said earlier that low public awareness of a requirement to pay tolls within two days is the result of an insufficient public relations campaign to promote the new system.
Motorists are also urged to register with M-Flow before using the system, as this will enable them to access more convenient payment methods. Otherwise, non-members can go to the department's website to arrange for toll payment.