The rise of traffic post lockdown

What’s the traffic looking like right now? Go on take a look out your office window if you’re working from the office of course.

Without sounding like the traffic update on the radio it’s been an interesting year to be watching the statistics on what’s happening on our roads.

Did you know that 356.5billion* miles were driven across Great Britain in 2019? Clearly, with lockdown, the statistics for 2020 would’ve been hugely different but then came the staycation time in summer with families travelling across the country.

So what’s your guess for the traffic stats for 2020 so far?

Transport use has definitely been something that working from home has affected however the government highlighted that on Monday 14th September road usage was at it’s highest recorded level since pre 16th March 2020 when the PM made the lockdown statement.

The ONS reported that ‘road traffic across all motor vehicles has continued to gradually return to levels seen in the first week of February 2020 following a lockdown low point around the end of March.’

They highlight; ‘On the 14th September, heavy vehicle traffic was five percentage points higher than traffic seen on the equivalent Monday in the first week of February. Car traffic remained below the levels seen in the first week of February, but over the last few months it has increased from around 30 percentage points below February traffic levels to around 7 percentage points below.’

What’s projected for the rest of 2020

With this week’s announcement that working from home is the preferred option for office workers will the traffic be quieter? Possibly.

But don’t forget with Autumn there comes more road use as cyclists transfer back to motor vehicles for longer journeys and people’s habits change. And in October Christmas shopping starts. The upcoming three months are not just busy with shoppers but hauliers are non-stop on the road network delivering festive supplies to retailers across the land.

The pandemic has certainly had an impact on how people use their vehicles; the AA Populus Poll conducted a few months back told us that 51% of people will carry on using their car as usual whereas around 40% of people will rethink how they travel and why they travel.

Don’t forget the encouragement not to use public transport will fuel car journeys.