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Golden Gate Bridge goes to digital toll system

The last toll collected by a human being was paid by Jim Eddie, who was driving his vintage 1937 Packard.
STEPHEN LAM/Reuters
The last toll collected by a human being was paid by Jim Eddie, who was driving his vintage 1937 Packard.

SAN FRANCISCO — Drivers approaching the majestic Golden Gate Bridge experienced something new Wednesday: no human toll collectors.

The workers were removed in favor of cheaper and faster electronic transponders and a camera system that photographs every license plate that comes through and mails an invoice to each motorist who does not prepay.

Those who fail to pay their invoices will receive warnings and could eventually have a hold placed on their vehicle registration at the California Department of Motor Vehicles.

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In addition to saving money, the move is expected to improve traffic flow on the iconic span, which opened in 1937. The California Highway Patrol said traffic was flowing smoothly, with no delays early Wednesday.

ASSOCIATED PRESS