I have a Pennsylvania EZpass, and it's registered and my license plate is on the account. However, I rarely use EZpass, so I removed it from my car in a fit of cleaning up and put it in storage. I can't easily get to it.
I need to travel, and the trip will work much better on EZpass toll roads, and my account has a lot of stored value and I'd rather use it up.
So what happens if I use the EZpass lanes without the transponder? Will it snap a photo of my license plate and do the billing correctly without punishment? Or is it gonna hurt?
To clarify what I mean by punishment/hurt: not what FasTrak does. FasTrak, if your toll tag misreads, they use license plate and if that's in the system, done. Not a punishment. If not, they send you a letter with a $25 penalty plus the toll - punishment. Except they invite you to link the plate to a FasTrak account, and if you do that, the $25 is waived. Not a punishment after all. The Golden Gate Bridge doesn't even do the $25 because they have no room for toll booths, so they don't punish people for that.
I did research this on the Internet, and I found the EZpass states tossed the term "penalty" around quite a lot, using it to describe all mannner of system glitches, and from user anecdote, many of them simply get resolved with no extra cost or trivial extra cost. (I recall that earlier in EZpass‘ history, they did punish users for misreads and such, and perhaps they kept the term-of-art even after they got rid of the actual penalties.)
So... much of this question is asking beyond the web-published FAQs, and more about how it works real-world in practice today.