Dart Charge scheme now in effectMore than 100,000 vehicles have been registered for a Dart Charge account, the Highways Agency has revealed.

The HA said that since account registrations went live on November 5, up to 2200 people every hour have visited the Dart Charge website to sign up for a pre-pay account, which saves up to a third on each crossing.

To help ease congestion at the Dartford Crossing, drivers no longer stop at a barrier to pay the Crossing charge. Instead, they have to pay the Dart Charge online, by phone or post, or at certain retailers across the country.

“For most people using the Dartford Crossing, a prepay account will be the cheapest and most convenient way to pay the crossing charge,” said Highways Agency project director, Nigel Gray. “I’m really encouraged by the take up so far, but urge all drivers who use the Crossing to sign up for an account and benefit from the discount it offers.”

The Agency said haulage firms have been among the first to sign up. A total of 1157 business fleets have already been migrated to Dart Charge, HA said, and it was working with the 100 largest fleet operators – between them covering more than 20,000 vehicles – to help them prepare for the changes.

Foreign drivers have been setting up accounts too, with three per cent of overall accounts – around the same proportion of foreign vehicles that use the crossing each day. Registrations from 52 different countries have been received so far.

HA said all existing DART-Tag customers should now have been contacted with details of how to migrate their account. Any who have not yet been contacted should call Dart Charge operatives.

Work to remove the payment booths and introduce a new road layout began on November 28 and will be completed in spring 2015. HA said all road works are being planned to minimise disruption.