Drivers spending 1 month each year in traffic

Traffic is getting worse across the U.S., and some commuters living in the most congested areas spend a month sitting in traffic.

The INRIX Scorecard listing the cities with the worst commutes and the Top 10 Worst Commute Corridors.
The INRIX Scorecard listing the cities with the worst commutes and the Top 10 Worst Commute Corridors. INRIX

If you're wondering why there's never enough time in the day, perhaps its because you've been spending a month each year sitting in traffic.

New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Pittsburg are home to the top-10 worst corridors for rush hour traffic, which isn't news for anyone who actually lives there. Traffic information provider INRIX has analyzed gridlock and traffic patterns in the U.S. for the past four years and keeps a scorecard of the most congested cities. Some unlucky souls spend an average of 4 work weeks stuck in traffic.

At the top of INRIX's Top 10 Corridors list is an 11-mile stretch of roadway on I-95 southbound around the Cross Bronx Expressway, which takes New Yorkers 43 minutes on average to drive. That's not even 4 mph.

And it's just as bad in parts of the West Coast. Some unlucky workers in Los Angeles spend the better part of an hour inching along the 20-mile stretch eastbound on the Riverside Freeway from Costa Mesa Freeway interchange to McKinley Street during peak commutes.

INRIX's data shows that traffic has increased steadily for the past 11 months. The 150,000 additional jobs spurred by the economic recovery meant more drivers hitting the road each day, causing commuters to experience a 10 percent increase in traffic in 2010. If unemployment falls from 10 percent to 7 percent, people can expect 9 million more drivers on the road to work each day. More drivers will mean more gridlock and traffic for everyone.

With traffic getting worse each year and drivers spending a greater portion of their lives in their cars, it's easy to understand the trend toward in-car entertainment.

About the author

Liane Yvkoff is a freelance writer who blogs about cars for CNET Car Tech. E-mail Liane.

 

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