United Kingdom must tackle 'astonishing' cost of congestion, study says

United Kingdom must tackle 'astonishing' cost of congestion, study says

Drivers in the capital spent an average 28 hours in peak hour traffic a year ago, with the figure falling to 23 hours in Glasgow.

Mancunian motorists spent an average of 39 hours a year in rush hour traffic at a cost of just over £1,400 per driver, while those in Birmingham were held up for an average of 36 hours.

In Scotland, Aberdeen and Edinburgh drivers lost 28 hours a year to peak time traffic and in Wales, the most congested city was.

Worst for jams was London, Europe's second most congested location after Moscow, with drivers spending an average of 74 hours in gridlock past year, up one hour on 2016.

Based on the findings, the USA ranked as the most congested developed country in the world, with drivers spending an average of 41 hours a year in traffic during peak hours, which cost drivers almost $305 billion in 2017, an average of $1,445 per driver1.

With less than a tenth of the population of Birmingham, Lincoln is a surprising entry in the 10 most congested large towns and cities in the UK.

Motorists in London lost an average of 74 hours - more than three days - in 2017, an hour more than in 2016.

Professor Graham Cookson, chief economist at Inrix, said: "Combined with the rising price of motoring, the cost of congestion is astonishing".

Despite the Department for Transport pledging an additional £23bn on road schemes, the RAC has said there is no "silver bullet to sorting out congestion".

"It takes billions out of the economy and impacts on businesses and individuals".

"The average figure for London is £2,430".

Calling for for innovative approaches to deal with the growing number of cars on the road, he added: "Increased flexible working or road charges have potential, however transport authorities should be looking to exciting developments in data analytics and artificial intelligence which promise to reinvent our approach to traffic management". The average cost per driver was $1,445 (US), £968 (UK), and €1,168 (Germany).

"Congestion is costing the Welsh economy nearly £2bn a year, with Cardiff accounting for more than half of this cost".

"This will help cut congestion, shorten journey times, and boost economic growth".

A spokeswoman said this "record amount" of funding would "help to upgrade and maintain local roads up and down the country".