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NHAI's Toll Plaza Safety: Protecting Workers and Motorists.



  Oct 13, 2023

NHAI’s Toolkit to Address Violent Motorists at Toll Plazas



Issue: Frequent violent altercations between toll plaza workers and motorists, often leading to physical confrontations.

Recent Incident: A video went viral showing an altercation between toll plaza workers and a motorist couple on National Highway 44 in Haryana’s Sonepat.

Reasons:

Disputes over FASTag issues or reluctance to pay toll fees.

Previous incidents include a worker shot dead over a refusal to pay Rs 27 at Kherki Daula toll plaza in 2011.

Remedies introduced by NHAI:

Body Cameras: Mandatory for toll-booth workers to de-escalate conflicts and record proof.

Gender Balance: Deployment of women staff during day shifts.

Training: Behavioral training and anger management for toll staff.

Documentation: Use mobile cameras for recording altercations.

Professional Conduct: Only senior toll staff to handle escalated situations; immediate police intervention when required.

Uniform Mandate: Toll agency staff should always wear NHAI-prescribed uniforms with visible names.

Safety Measures:“Overpowering” aggressive motorists without resorting to violence and seeking safe locations during dangerous situations.

Emphasizing Politeness: Toll staff to use “polite insistence” and avoid provocative language.

Economic Significance: Toll collection is crucial for NHAI’s development model. Post the introduction of FASTags in February 2021, toll collections surged, reaching around Rs 48,000 crore in 2022-23.

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