VIDEO: Crush Barrier: Rooftop Van Passengers Battered By Toll Booth Arm 

Truck passengers get hit by a barrier at the toll plaza in Telangana, India, in July 2021. (@CYBTRAFFIC/Zenger)

A van loaded with people in India overshot the toll booth and the automatic barrier repeatedly swung down on the people perched on the top.

The incident was filmed in the city of Hyderabad in the Indian state of Telangana, and was shared on social media by the local traffic police.

A group of people sitting on the roof of a van was clobbered by an automatic barrier at a toll booth.

The driver of the van, who was waiting in a line at a tollbooth, accelerated too much and overshot the booth before coming to a stop.

As a result, the automatic barrier kept lowering and raising onto the group’s heads.

“Rash driving and carrying people in a goods carriage is always dangerous,” read the traffic police’s message posted with the video.

The incident comes just months after Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari announced all physical toll booths in India would be removed within a year and replaced with toll collection via GPS.

The country uses a system called FASTag to collect tolls. The Union Ministry of Road Transportation and Highways made FASTag mandatory in February. Vehicles that do not use the system are now required to pay double the toll fee at booths across the country.

In the footage, an orange truck is seen passing through the toll booth before the van with around half a dozen people on the roof’s loading area revs up to the booth.

After overshooting the stopping point, the barrier repeatedly lowers onto the group, with one man at the front bearing the brunt of it.

The automatic gate is the go-to type for smooth operations and reliable, constant movement, according to Rotech, an Australian producer of gates and turnstiles. Since automatic gates do not generate heat, they are more suitable than manual gates for commercial spaces.

But automatic gates come with their own set of problems.

Gate arms can malfunction at random or when users fail to pay the toll. Though such problems have decreased as technology has improved, they usually require attention from a lane attendant, which can cause delays, longer lines and unsafe lane changes.

In some cases impatient drivers will even break off the gate arm, which is costly to repair and can cause further delays, according to the U.S. Federal Highway Administration.

Despite the strong hits, no one reported any injuries in the incident. Help arrived soon to block the barrier from repeatedly going up and down.

(Edited by Ali McCadden and Kristen Butler)



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