The UK’s road traffic congestion problem could be significantly reduced by implementing a ‘braking tax’ on drivers, a novel concept that has been suggested by transport economists. By charging drivers for their braking events, traffic flow could be significantly improved, as drivers would be incentivised to maintain a more constant speed. This could be achieved using telematics, the technology that insurance companies use to monitor driving behaviour.

A braking tax could also have environmental benefits, as smoother driving reduces fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. However, the concept has raised concerns over privacy, as telematics involves tracking drivers’ movements. Some critics argue that the tax could unfairly penalise drivers in urban areas, where frequent braking is often unavoidable.

Despite these concerns, there is growing support for the idea among experts, who believe it could be a viable solution to the UK’s traffic congestion problem. The concept is being considered as part of a wider debate on road pricing, which is seen as a potential way to manage demand and improve the efficiency of the UK’s road network.

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