How long did you spend stuck in traffic jams in 2017? Official figures released by traffic information supplier, Inrix, reveal motorists spent over an entire day stuck in gridlock in 2017, at a cost of £1,168.
The time and cost more than doubles for drivers in London, who were revealed to have spent an average of 74 hours in traffic last year, which costs them £2,430.
The UK was shown to be the 10th most congested city in the world and 3rd in Europe. The UK’s most congested stretch of road was the A406 northbound from Chiswick roundabout to Hanger Lane, where each driver spent on average 56 hours in congestion last year.
The total cost of congestion to UK drivers was calculated to be more than £37.7 billion in 2017. This takes into account both the direct costs such as wasted fuel and time, while indirect costs include the knock-on effect of increased freighting fees on the price of household goods.
Chief economist at Inrix, Professor Graham Cookson stated, “…the cost of congestion is astonishing. With the Office for National Statistics showing more cars on the road than ever before…transport authorities should be looking to exciting developments in data analytics and AI, which promise to reinvent our approach to traffic management.”
Motoring groups are in agreement that more should be done to tackle the issue.
RAC spokesman Rod Dennis said, “In some areas our roads are struggling to cope under the sheer weight of traffic. Not only is this bad news for the economy, it’s also bad for air quality and indeed drivers’ own well being.”
“There is no silver bullet to sorting out congestion…but there needs to be an emphasis placed on providing cheap, practical, reliable alternatives to the car – especially in urban areas.”
Dennis added that many drivers would be happy using alternative methods of travel, providing public transport was improved. Referring to the annual Report on Motoring, 74% of motorists said they would struggle to adjust their lifestyle without the use of a car. However, 63% said would use their car less if public transport were better. Dennis said that, ‘This highlights the unconformable truth in the UK – that with few viable transport alternatives outside major cities, having access to a car is simply a necessity for millions of people.”
A spokeswoman from the Department for Transport said, “The government is taking the big decisions for Britain’s future, underlined by our record £23 billion for road schemes – the biggest investment in a generation.” Their aim is to cut congestion, shorten journey times and boost economic growth.
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