This study, conducted for ethical reasons on a driving simulator, has indicated that drivers take more risks when they are being charged for their use of roadspace on the basis of time, than they do when they are not subject to such charges. This effect is highly significant for some measures of risk taking (e.g. red light violation and illegal overtaking) but less so for others. The effect is apparent even at very low charge levels and is observed irrespective of whether the charge is based on total travel time or time spent below specified speeds (‘congestion charges’). There are however some differences in the types of risky behaviour engendered by these two charging regimes. These results have obvious and serious implications for the implementation of time-based road user charges
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