DARTFORD TOLLS SHOULD BE SCRAPPED – FTA
The Freight Transport Association is angry that discounts for using the Dartford crossing are to be restricted to local residents and that the facility is not to be extended to local businesses. FTA says that local industry, as daily users of the facility and providing employment and a contribution to the local economy, should also enjoy free transit.
FTA's Director of External Affairs, Geoff Dossetter said, 'We have always said that, since the construction of the crossing has long since been paid for, tolls at Dartford should be totally scrapped. For industry and motorists they are costly and inconvenient and the process of slowing traffic to collect a toll is very bad for air quality. On many occasions the collection of the toll adds to congestion problems.
'A discount scheme for local residents is good news and a step in the right direction. However, it should undoubtedly be extended to local commercial vehicle operators who use the crossing as part of their daily process of delivering or receiving goods and services.
'Commercial vehicle operators are key contributors to the local economy and should be supported.
'The continuing collection of tolls at Dartford is outdated, unnecessary and unfair and should be stopped.'
The Freight Transport Association represents the transport interests of companies moving goods by road, rail, sea and air. FTA members operate over 220,000 goods vehicles – almost half the UK fleet. In addition they consign over 90 per cent of the freight moved by rail and over 70 per cent of sea and air freight. FTA's website can be found at www.fta.co.uk