The RAC says it’s a case of ‘short-term pain for longer term gain’ for drivers in England after new figures show an increase in delays on major A-roads and motorways in 2018.
Figures published by the DfT on 28 February show ‘average delay’ on the Strategic Road Network (SRN) rose by 3.9% to 9.4 seconds per vehicle per mile last year.
Average delay on local ‘A’ roads is also up, by 0.8%, to 47.3 seconds per vehicle per mile.
In terms of average speed, there was a year-on-year fall on the SRN (down by 0.6% to 59mph) and on local ‘A’ roads (down 1.3% to 24.9mph).
The RAC says while added congestion is ‘clearly bad news’, drivers should take into account ongoing work to improve capacity on motorways.
Nicholas Lyes, RAC head of roads policy, said: “More congestion means more wasted time and money, which is clearly bad news for drivers, but it may be a case of short-term pain for longer term gain.
“Much work is being carried out on our motorways to improve capacity by upgrading them to smart motorways, but this inevitably causes delays.
“Nonetheless, extra capacity is badly needed as Britain now has around 38m vehicles registered for use, and in the 10 years from 2007 more than four million extra vehicles came on to the road – that’s a 12% increase.”