Shocking: Pretoria Traffic Worse Than Cape Town and Joburg as Rush Hours Make a Comeback
According to the latest traffic statistics, South African road traffic is gradually recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic but has yet to reach 2019 levels. As reported by News24, TomTom, a GPS company, ranks traffic in 390 cities worldwide using “floating car data” collected from various sources to create a global index. The latest index shows that the UK, India, Ireland, Japan, and Italy are the worst places to drive during rush hour. An average one-way, 10km commute can take 36 minutes. South Africa’s most congested cities perform slightly better, with an average reduction of about 15 minutes from the global records.
However, Pretoria remains the worst city in South Africa for rush-hour commuters, with an average 16-minute commute time for a 10km journey, making it the 147th globally. Cape Town is close behind in second place nationally and 156th globally, with commuters taking about 30 seconds less than those in Pretoria to travel 10km but spending approximately five and a half full days (132 hours) per year sitting in traffic. In addition, Johannesburg has been slow to bounce back, and it now ranks fifth nationally behind East London and Bloemfontein.
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Durban has the lowest congestion levels in South Africa that TomTom measures, with commuters taking around 12 minutes and 20 seconds to cover 10km and spending 112 hours in traffic annually. However, while all South African cities ranked in TomTom’s index have risen in traffic since 2021, they have yet to return to 2019 levels.
TomTom’s index includes data from Egypt and South Africa. It claims that traffic in Cairo is significantly worse, with commuters spending up to 194 hours per year in rush hour. Compared to other countries, commuters take the longest time in traffic per year in Bengaluru, India (260 hours); Dublin, Ireland (277 hours); Bucharest, Romania (277 hours); and London, England (325 hours). Nonetheless, some countries have seen significant reductions in rush hour congestion, such as Turkey, which has cut commute times by up to 1 minute and 40 seconds in four cities, the highest of any measured in the study, and Australia, Belgium, Egypt, France, and Hong Kong.
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