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Traffic levels plummet as England enters second lockdown

By PA News

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Traffic levels in major English cities plummeted as the second national lockdown began on Thursday.

Location technology firm TomTom found that the level of congestion on London’s roads between 11am and noon was at 19%, compared with 40% during the same period last week.

Other cities to see a decline in traffic jams included Birmingham (from 27% to 17%), Manchester (from 24% to 15%), Newcastle (from 28% to 16%) and Bristol (from 31% to 15%).

A view from Westminster Bridge in London on Thursday (Victoria Jones/PA)
A view from Westminster Bridge in London on Thursday (Victoria Jones/PA)

Congestion levels represent the proportion of additional time required for journeys compared with free-flow conditions.

Cities experienced increases in traffic between 8am and 9am compared to the previous week, which is likely to be due to schools reopening after the half-term break.

The Government is ordering people to “stay at home except for specific purposes” such as work and education.

Official guidance states: “You should look to reduce the number of journeys you make.”

TomTom reported that hold-ups in London from 5pm to 6pm on Wednesday reached the highest level recorded in data going back to May 2018.

A congestion level of 104% was recorded as many people visited friends, family, shops and restaurants in the hours before the new lockdown came into force.

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