Q: How Long Do Drivers Spend in Traffic Jams? A: Two Ice Ages a Year

Article excerpt

Byline: DAVID WILLIAMS

RECORD road delays in London have been uncovered by new research.

Each year, the delays suffered by drivers of the four million vehicles on the capital's key roads add up to a total of 19,500 years - equal to two ice ages.

The findings were uncovered in a detailed Transport for London study by Conservatives on the London Assembly.

It reveals that 10.2 billion minutes of annual delays were recorded between 2004 and this year.

Thismeans that each driver loses the equivalent of about 50 hours a year in "unacceptable" delays on London's 1,400 miles of motorways, A-roads, busy minor roads and the congestion charge zone, placing a huge strain on the economy. "The study concludes that [pounds sterling]1.55 billion each year is lost to industry and business through road delays.

"It is equivalent to more than [pounds sterling]1million per mile of road per year - and the figure doubles to [pounds sterling]2 million on principal commuter routes.

Researchers obtained the figures by tracking hundreds of vehicles, using satellite technology between 7am and 7pm.

The study, Total Traffic Delay For London, reveals that the capital's red routes - a network of "express" highways intended to speed drivers in and out of the city - are also suffering from a buildup of unacceptable delays. Over the 352 miles of red routes, the annual delay to motorists was 3. …