Toll sensors mistakenly overcharge some drivers

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — You may have been overcharged when traveling through the tolls at the Downtown and Midtown tunnels.

Elizabeth River Crossings’ Leila Rice said, “About one percent of those using E-ZPass through the Downtown and Midtown tunnels may have been overcharged … we are rectifying the problem, and it should be corrected by close of business Thursday.”

Rice told 10 On Your Side complaints from motorists brought attention to the problem. E-ZPass took the complaints, called ERC personnel, who checked the license plates and confirmed some two-axle vehicles had been charged the toll price for vehicles with more axles. spoke with one of the overcharged drivers on Thursday.  Julie Foreman checked her account and immediately knew something was wrong.

“I’ve been driving to and from Portsmouth through the tunnels for 12 years,” said Foreman. “Even a dollar each way seems like a lot of money when you add it up. I decided to check my account on Friday to check my transactions just out of curiosity and I noticed that the very first transaction was $4 and the rest were $1.”

Foreman says when she called customer service with questions for them about why $4 had shown up, they had questions for her too.

“Right off the bat they thought I had a trailer, then that I was possibly being tailgated,” said Foreman.

Neither of which was true. They promised to investigate and credit her back. In the meantime, more people realized they’d been overcharged too.

Rice blames the mistake on overly sensitive road sensors that recognized two-axle vehicles as having more axles. She said most of the mistakes were made in the westbound lane of the Downtown Tunnel.

One motorist emailed 10 On Your Side to say she hasn’t been charged at all for eight trips through the eastbound tube of the Downtown Tunnel. When she called ERC, she was told there were issues because the system was new and they ‘hoped all would be fixed soon.’

She said she was told she would be billed for the trips later once the system got caught up.

To check your E-ZPass account, click here.


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