WILLIAMS TOWNSHIP, PA – The Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission today announced that the agency’s I-78 Toll Plaza returned to full service and should remain open without interruption going forward.
The bridge’s manned toll plaza had been reduced from four available to as few as two lanes in recent weeks to allow for the installation of larger, more heavily anchored concrete protection blocks in front of the facilities individual toll booths. These so-called “bumper blocks” serve to protect the plaza’s structural supports, tolling equipment, and – most importantly – toll collection personnel from vehicular accidents and errant drivers.
The need to replace the facility’s 25-year-old bumper blocks arose in the wake of February 9 truck crash at the toll plaza. A tractor trailer veered into the toll plaza severing one of the concrete protection barriers separating two of the toll collection lanes.
The crash forced a closure of one of the toll collection lanes for the remainder of February so emergency repairs could be made. This included the installation of a larger concrete bumper block with reinforced anchoring. It subsequently was determined that the added measure of protection should be added to the toll plaza’s other cash collection lanes. That addition work was completed early this morning, enabling the Commission to return the toll plaza to a full four-lane operation.
The I-78 toll facility (four-lane conventional toll booth plaza with nearby separated two-lane Express E-ZPass structure) is approximately one mile west of the Commission’s I-78 Toll Bridge. The facility handles only westbound traffic. It processed slightly more than 32,000 toll transactions a day last year. Of those transactions, nearly 70 percent were handled through E-ZPass – most of which occurred in the segregated Express-E-ZPass facility next to the conventional barrier toll plaza. Express-E-ZPass allows E-ZPass-equipped motorists to pay their tolls while driving at highway speeds.