A Multi-Disciplinary Perspective
Edited by Erik Verhoef, Michiel Bliemer, Linda Steg and Bert van Wee
Chapter 3: Behavioural Responses of Freight Transporters and Shippers to Road-User Charging Schemes: An Empirical Assessment
3. Behavioural responses of freight transporters and shippers to roaduser charging schemes: an empirical assessment1 David Hensher and Sean Puckett 3.1 INTRODUCTION Congestion charging is recognised as an eﬀective instrument in responding to the concerns about high levels of traﬃc congestion. Although the economic arguments have been known for decades and the technological capability is now widely available, the last bastion of constraint: namely, political will, is starting to move in support of implementation. The London experience (Transport for London, 2003; Evans, 2005) is being used as a catalyst for a broader recognition of what can be done without a political backlash in a Western democratic society. The adage ‘it is not a matter of if but of when’ seems to be the prevailing view in a growing number of jurisdictions, Stockholm2 being the most recent (for a review, see Hensher and Puckett, 2005b, 2007a). The problem of congested roads is expected to get considerably worse over the coming years. While this places traﬃc congestion high on government agendas, it does not mean that pricing will also be high on the agenda as a way to reduce traﬃc levels. Yet freight companies have much to gain from less congested roads in terms of opportunity costs, including the number of vehicles required to achieve a speciﬁc task set. Less congested roads would also have an indirect beneﬁt for the recruitment of drivers. Indirect road-use charges via fuel taxes are remotely linked to use of congested...
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