The tailbacks on both sides of the Dartford Crossing are now almost guaranteed for long parts of the day. Indeed sometimes they are queud back miles to Jn 3 or 4 on the south side and Jn 28 or Jn 29 on the North side. Even on a weekend the queue is at least 30 minutes duration.
The fees were supposed to be abolished when the crossings were finished, but have not been. I understand that some money is needed for maintenance and I also understand that the government receive a substantial income from the crossing.
My idea is therefore to repeal the toll. If this is not practical then as soon as the tailback reaches a certain length, the barriers open automatically and traffic is allowed to flow freely until the backlog is cleared upon which time the barriers close and fees are taken again. This would allow income still to be collected, but would allow traffic to move.
Why is this idea important?
1) Alleviates frustration, avoids lane changes, reduces accident rates, allows for improved recreation journeys
2) Avoids lost man / business hours, reduces drain on the economy.
3) Avoids hundreds (even thousands) of cars generating extra heat and pollution, improves ecology / environment
4) Promotes better access to two regional shopping centres (Lakeside and Blue Water) improving economy and jobs in the local area.