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BALTIMORE, Maryland (WJZ) – The Maryland Transportation Authority has received an unprecedented number of phone calls following the ongoing processing of deferred tolls.

The MDTA has moved to a fully electronic toll system to protect collectors and the traveling public in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Weighing in closures and layoffs, the agency has postponed toll billing until spring 2020.

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Now MDTA has started processing these charges. As a result, an increasing number of people are calling the call center. According to the agency, most of the calls were made by drivers who passed through toll booths between March 2020 and October 2020 without E-ZPass. The agency shared an example from November 2021 where the center received 180,000 calls.

“I just tried calling yesterday (Thursday). All day long I tried to get them to answer the phone, ”said John Davis, a Dundalk resident. “You can’t take that much. They don’t answer the phone at all.

Deferred tolls will continue to be displayed until summer 2022.

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In addition to complaints about long wait times to reach the call center, Davis and several others allege that MDTA overcharges when processing tolls.

“They billed me $ 120. It’s supposed to be $ 30, ”Davis said. “What I owe them I will pay.” But if I don’t owe them that, I don’t think I should have to pay it.

According to MDTA officials, the most cost-effective way to travel on Maryland’s toll roads is to use an E-ZPass. The transponder is linked to a bank account or to a credit card. The agency recommends that people maintain a positive balance on their accounts and ensure that their current vehicles are listed on the transponder. Drivers can also register for Pay-By-Plate, which automatically debits their account.

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If a person needs to pay a toll bill, they can do so in person at a customer service center Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm In addition, they can use the callback feature when staff are on call. able to take charge of this. The number for this feature is 1-888-321-6824.