Widespread Social media claims that the Dartford Crossing tolls have been scrapped are a hoax and failing to pay could still result in a fine of more than £100 for each journey.
‘News’ of the tolls being axed rapidly circulated on social media channels, after a ‘spoof news’ site posted the claims on April Fools’ day.
The Southend News Network site claimed: ‘The magic moment arrived when a 2009 Toyota Avensis passed through the exit on the Kent side at 11.26am.’
This referred back to the original 1999 plan to scrap tolls by the early Noughties when the Crossing’s construction costs had been recouped.
Responding to a 2009 Freedom of Information Request concerning the continuing use of tolls, the Department for Transport said: “The original intention was to remove tolls when the costs of the Bridge had been recovered.
“However, traffic levels have risen far faster than projected and an earlier study has indicated that removal of toll charges would increase traffic levels by 17 per cent on 2003 levels.”
Is the Dartford Crossing ever free to use?
Yes. Anyone using the bridge or tunnels between 10pm and 6am will not have to pay the toll.
Additionally, few people know it, but cyclists can use the Dartford Crossing for free.
They can’t physically cycle, but their bikes will be transported for free.
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