Brussels traffic worse than London

In 2012 the average Belgian motorist spent longer in traffic jams than motorists in any of our neighbouring countries. The figures come from a study by the Dutch traffic information platform Inrix. Although we spent 12% less time stuck in traffic in 2012 (59 hours) than we did in 2011, Belgian motorists were still delayed by traffic jams for longer than motorists in the Netherlands (52 hours), Germany and France (both 37 hours).

The average amount of time spent in traffic jams in Europe as whole fell by 18%. This trend has continued into 2013 with a 23% fall during the first quarter.

However, here in Belgium this was a more modest 1%. The amount of time spent in traffic jams fell throughout Europe in 2012, except in Luxembourg where it rose by 29%.

"Link between traffic jams and the economic situation"

Bryan Mistele of Inrix told journalists that "There has always been a strong link between economic circumstances and the level of traffic jams on the roads.”

"As unemployment reached record levels in 2012 and the average European household saw its fortune fall by 13.6%; it is not surprising that the number of traffic jams fell.”

In the countries where the economic crisis is biting the hardest, the amount of time spent in traffic jams has fallen sharpest. In Portugal by 50%, 38% in Spain, 34% in Italy and 24% in Hungary

Brussels is the worst city in Europe when it comes to jams (83 hours), followed by Antwerp (77 hours), London (72 hours) and Rotterdam (71 hours). Ghent is tenth with 53 hours/year with Charleroi coming in 21st with 41 hours a year being spent in traffic jams there.