Congested roadways are common problems that all drivers have to deal with. Whether commuting to work or taking a leisurely drive around town, this is a problem that causes a lot of stress and unnecessary frustration. However, while this is still a major problem, many engineers are devoting their time and resources to identifying why this problem exists and what they can do to make the problem more manageable for drivers in everyday situations. can. By understanding the statistics associated with the problem of road congestion, both the engineer and the driver will be much closer to determining how the solution can be reached. To learn more about how engineers are helping to address the problems of traffic congestion, check out the infographic below, created by the New Jersey Institute of Technology. online masters in civil engineering degree program.
NJIT Online Masters in Civil Engineering

increasing road jam problem

As more and more people began to purchase personal vehicles, the need for concise road congestion control began to grow. Roadways across America need to become more versatile and friendly to drivers, culminating in troubling statistics recently encouraging civil engineers to dedicate more time and effort to the problem. In 2013, road congestion increased by six percent, where the average driver would waste up to forty-seven hours in traffic over the course of a year. This was an average of traffic hours, and there were some cities that were in better and worse condition from year to year. Los Angeles was cited as the worst city for road congestion, with up to 64 hours per year wasted by the average driver in traffic. San Jose fared better at the bottom of the list, as drivers spent only 36 hours a year in traffic. To address this issue, researchers are looking at the primary causes of road congestion and how they can be reduced.

due to traffic jam

Barriers were among the top causes of traffic congestion. It accounts for more than forty percent of all congestion incidents, and occurs when drivers cannot use the road efficiently, whether due to poor lane widths, difficult navigating merge points, or various road grade. About twenty five percent of all problems of road jams are caused by traffic accidents. These included things like car accidents, disabled vehicles and the sudden appearance of dangerous debris. Natural problems accounted for fifteen percent of all incidents. Things like negative weather conditions such as snow or hail and extreme wind were included on this list. The remaining twenty percent were based mainly on human and pedestrian factors. Construction projects and closed roadways made up ten percent of these errors, and the remaining ten percent was split between bad traffic lights and other directional problems, and marathons and major political and sporting event problems.

reducing future traffic issues

To help alleviate these issues, a number of programs are already being suggested. Currently, congestion costs more than two hundred billion dollars, with wasted fuel and gas costing more than four and a half billion dollars. The average commuter costs as much as $1,020 per year, which translates to 45 wasted hours and 25 gallons of wasted fuel. At five dollars a gallon, the average fuel cost for such congested issues is more than $22 billion. With the current projected population growth pattern, this problem will only get worse if steps are not taken as soon as possible to help solve the problem.

proposed actions

Among the most popular strategies to help address this problem are proposed methods of opening up known congested areas. Freeway congestion accounts for forty percent of all problems, while the remaining sixty percent is made up of city streets. Studies also show that trucks account for more than twenty percent of all urban congestion. The plans are in effect to help trucks and other large vehicles more efficient in the way they pass through roads and other areas, thereby helping to reduce congestion. Finally, with such plans available for trucks and buses, public transport expansion plans are also in effect to help maximize time on the road and save money.

field technology development

In order to further optimize the solutions, technological advancements are being made to provide real time solutions to the problems of congestion. With active routing information available, drivers will have more options when it comes to determining the right road to take. Advances in parking technology can also help make parking more efficient and accessible, which will further reduce urban congestion. Developments planned for the next ten years also include autonomous vehicles, which could help reduce congestion and human errors in driving. All these solutions can transform roadways, improve congestion and help drivers manage their time and resources better.

Er. Mukesh Kumar

Photo of author
Er. Mukesh Kumar is Editor in Chief and Co-Funder at Civil Engineering Website. Mukesh Kumar is a Bachelor in Civil Engineering From MIT. He has work experience in Highway Construction, Bridge Construction, Railway Steel Girder work, Under box culvert construction, Retaining wall construction. He was a lecturer in a Engineering college for more than 6 years.