In London congestion costs firms £237m a year © Press Association Images
In London congestion costs firms £237m a year © Press Association Images

Congestion costing UK firms £767m

30 November 2016

UK businesses are losing around £767m a year because of traffic congestion, according to a study.

The research found traffic congestion in the UK is getting worse, with an average journey in 2015 taking 29% longer than it would have on uncongested roads, up on 25% longer in 2010.

These are among the conclusions of the TomTom Traffic Index, which has analysed traffic across the UK’s 25 most congested cities and towns.

Congested traffic increases the time each vehicle spends on the road by an average of 127 hours a year. Given there are 902,500 light commercial vehicles operating in these cities and towns, this would cost businesses an estimated £767,937 in lost productivity.

“Traffic congestion may be seen as a fact of life for every driver but, cumulatively, it is taking a heavy toll on the UK economy and this should not be accepted as an inevitability,” said Beverley Wise, director UK and Ireland for TomTom Telematics.

In London £237m is lost to congestion each year, followed by Manchester (£157m) and Birmingham (£81m).

The most congested cities were Belfast, London, Manchester, Edinburgh, Brighton, Hull, Bournemouth, Newcastle, Bristol and Sheffield.

Wise said telematics solutions could help businesses mitigate the effect of congestion and minimise time spent on the road, by improving schedules and helping drivers avoid jams.

Meanwhile, another report by law firm Addleshaw Goddard says a congested transport system, a lack of skilled workers, and a shortfall of available land for warehousing are holding back the UK logistics sector from meeting demand. 

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