Fewer big jams but more daily congestion

Belgium recorded a drop in the number of large traffic jams last year, but the type of congestion that appears each and every day in the same place and at the same time, so called structural traffic jams, is on the increase.

Unlike in 2013 few traffic jams were caused by the snow last year. The Belgian motoring association Touring reports that not a single traffic jam extended for more than 400 kilometres last year, while in 2013 this happened on no fewer than 11 occasions. Touring does say that anti-austerity strikes had a big impact causing considerable congestion on the roads.

The association’s traffic jam barometer recorded 18 hours in which jams extended for more than 300 km. For 2013 the figure was 36 hours and for 2010 it was 49 hours. These bad figures were largely caused by bad weather during the winter months.

The worst day for jams last year was 29 April when rain and crashes led to a total of 380 km of jams on Belgian roads at one point.

The number of hours of the day marred by shorter jams did increase last year. Jams covering between 100 km and 150 km were recorded for 1,010 hours of last year - or 42 full days. In 2013 the figure was only 937 hours.