Gridlocked Leeds: Five days a year lost in jams

Queueing traffic on the M1 leaving Leeds in the rush hour
Queueing traffic on the M1 leaving Leeds in the rush hour
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COMMUTERS in Leeds spend more than half an hour each day - the equivalent of five days a year - stuck in traffic, a survey reveals today.

The city’s gridlocked roads mean that journeys home from work take 54 per cent longer than when the roads are clear, according to traffic analysis by TomTom.

Leeds is rated the seventh most congested large city in the UK, and the country as a whole is said to be second worst in the world, behind China.

The most gridlocked road is Leeds is the M62 at Birstall, where it meets the M621.

Across Yorkshire, queues are even longer in Sheffield and Hull, which are both said to be as bad as rush-hour in New York and worse than the densely populated South American centres of Sao Paulo and Brasilia.

Leeds’ worst travel day last year was November 24, following a three car pile-up on the M62. But unlike most other large centres in the UK, queues in the city are said to have reduced over the past five years.

The global study of 390 cities in 48 countries found Mexico City was the most congested at 66 per cent, ahead of Bangkok and Jakarta.

Ralf-Peter Schaefer, of TomTom Traffic, said the study was “designed to help drivers, cities and transport planners to understand traffic congestion and, most importantly, how to reduce it”.

Separate research published on Monday found that the cost of congestion in the UK reached £31bn last year, an average of £968 per driver.