Mon, Dec 17, 2018 8:35 PM
Whilst ‘Driving Home For Christmas’ may be playing on the radio, it might be Chris Rea’s other classic driving song that will be more appropriate as traffic levels rise.
It will certainly be ‘The Road To Hell’ for some caught up in the Christmas congestion this week as the road networks get clogged with people driving home and driving out for a last minute purchase.
The RAC and traffic information firm Inrix suggests that Thursday and Friday this week will be the worst days for congestion, with 2.5m and 2.8m vehicles making leisure trips, combined with the normal rush hour traffic.
The major networks such as the M25, M6 and M40 are expected to see an estimated 20 million leisure journeys this week. Drivers are being advised to take alternative routes or delay their journey until after 8pm.
Inrix data scientist Joshua Kidd said: "Our data shows that compared to a normal day, Thursday 20th December will see the biggest increase in cars on the road.
"With most drivers setting out mid-morning, traffic will become heavier over the course of the afternoon and stay congested into the evening.
"But it's not just those off to see family and friends - commuters, last-ditch shoppers and online deliveries will contribute to clogging the roads.
"Drivers are advised to seek out alternative routes to their destinations and use the latest technology for real-time updates."
Whilst Highways England will lift more than 200 miles of roadworks to make the journeys a little easier, the RAC is asking drivers to take their own precautions to ensure individual drivers don’t add to the gridlock. Mark Souster from the RAC said: “It’s vitally important every driver planning a trip gives their car a once-over to make sure it’s up to the job.
“A single breakdown can bring some roads to a grinding halt, slowing down the Christmas getaway for all of us.”