New research claims traffic jams in the UK cost the economy £9 billion every year

Around 3,700 jams occur on the UK’s motorways and ‘A’ roads each day

 
According to new research released by Inrix, traffic jams on motorways and ‘A’ roads up and down the country are costing the UK economy £9billion every year.

The transport data company suggests that a number of tailbacks mean drivers are left sitting in long queues for up to fifteen hours.

Their research found that around 3,700 traffic jams occur on the UK’s motorways and ‘A’ roads each day, equating to over 1.35million during a 12 month period.

Traffic was looked at over the last year and it’s estimated that traffic jams on motorways and ‘A’ roads had cost the UK £9billion in excess fuel, wasted time and needless carbon emissions.

Around 3,700 jams occur on the UK's motorways and 'A' roads each day

New research claims traffic jams in the UK cost the economy £9 billion every year © Copyright Andrew Smith and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

 

According to their findings, the worst queue last year was on August 4 on the M5 northbound, near Junction 20 at Clevedon, Somerset, which saw drivers stuck in a traffic jam stretching 36 miles for 15 hours.

The queue was caused by an accident which involved two lorries and a fuel spillage – two lanes had to be closed whilst the incident was dealt with and it’s estimated this one incident alone cost the economy £2.4million.

Other major traffic jams occurred during the past 12 months, including one on the North Circular in London and three on the M6, all costing the UK economy around £1.2million each.

“Last year, we exceeded our target to keep 97% of lanes available to road users, to help smooth the flow of traffic. To support this we provide accurate, up-to-date information about conditions on the roads and keep traffic moving as much as possible,” said Mel Clarke, customer service director at Highways England.

However, according to reports, transport minister Jesse Norman has contacted Highways England suggesting to them that slip roads could be used in order to clear motorways following certain kinds of incidents.

According to newly released figures, queues on some of the UK’s major roads could reach a peak during November.

When queues were analsyed over a 12 month period up to August 2017, last November was the worst for queues, with nearly 170,000 hold-ups reported – a staggering 50% above average.

“As we head into November, the worst month for traffic jams last year, we advise motorists use the latest real-time traffic technology to keep up to date with the situation on the roads,” said Inrix’s chief economist Dr Graham Cookson.

 

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