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2014-06-03 10:15

MOTHER CITY TRAFFIC JAMS: Cape Town grabs the title of most congested city in SA according to TomTom’s 4th annual global traffic index. Image: Wheels24/Marcel Trout

JOHANNESBURG –  Satnav specialist TomTom has released its fourth annual global traffic index for 2013. The report analyses traffic in major cities in SA such as Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban and Cape Town.

The results revealed that Cape Town is now the most congested city in South Africa, surpassing Johannesburg which was the most congested city in 2012.


The report showed that traffic congestion on secondary roads is worse compared to main roads, and commuters are spending an unbelievable average of 10 working days per year stuck in traffic. It also showed South Africans spend an extra 13 minutes per hour stuck in traffic.

TomTom reports that traffic “shortcuts” can increase travel time by up to 50%.

Interestingly, the reports finds South Africa to be the only country in the world to experience its worst congestion on Monday mornings while the rest of the world experiences the worst congestion on  Tuesdays.


TomTom South Africa manager Daan Henderickx said: "Traffic congestion is nothing new, and
continues to be a global challenge. The traditional responses to congestion, such as building new roads or widening existing ones are no longer proving to be effective.

"Real time traffic information can help drivers find the quickest shortcut on their journey, and assist governments to make smarter decisions to improve traffic flow for their cities.”

TomTom’s Traffic Index compares travel times during non-congested hours with travel times in peak hours experienced by passenger vehicles. The report takes into account both local roads and highways and measures over 95 000kms of roadways in South Africa.

South Africa has seen an increase in congestion in six major cities, with Cape Town and East London’s congestion both increasing by 2%.

SA had a congestion level of 21%meaning travel time is increased by an average of 21% during heavy traffic.

Worst traffic in SA: Global ranking included

1 Cape Town 27% (33rd highest congestion globally)
2 Johannesburg 25% (48)
3 East London 22% (65)
4 Pretoria 22% (73)
5 Durban 18% (98)
6 Bloemfontein 12% (134/138)

The top ten most congested cities in 2013:

1 Moscow 74%    
2 Istanbul 62%    
3 Rio de Janeiro 55%    
4 Mexico City 54%    
5 São Paulo 46%    
6 Palermo 39%        
7 Warsaw 39%
8 Rome 37%                
9 Los Angeles 36%
10 Dublin 35%

Click here for the full SA traffic index report.
Results summary:
•South Africa has an overall congestion level of 21%.
• South Africans spend on average an extra 13 minutes per hour stuck in traffic.
• South Africans spend an average of 10 working days a year stuck in traffic.
• Cape Town is the most congested city with a congestion level of 27%.
• Bloemfontein is the least congested city in South Africa with a level of 12%.
• Pretoria and East London share the same amount of congestion with a level of 22%.
• Cape Town experiences the most congestion during morning peak periods with a congestion level of 71%.
• Cape Town experiences the worst evening peak congestion period with a level of 58%.
• All South African cities, except for East London, experience congestion during the morning peak periods compared to evening peak periods.
• Bloemfontein experiences the least congestion with a level of 24% during morning peak periods and 22% during evening peak periods.
• East London experiences the same amount of congestion during morning and evening peak periods at a level of 47%.
• South African cities experiences more congestion on secondary roads than on highways.
• Cape Town and Johannesburg share the same amount of congestion levels on their secondary roads with a level of 30%.
• Joburgers on average will cut their delay time caused by congestion in half if they take the highway as opposed to a secondary road.
• Congestion on secondary roads in Pretoria is three times the amount on its highways.
• On average, Capetonians will save six minutes for every hour during peak periods if they take the highway.
• South Africa is the only country in the world to experience their worst congestion on a Monday, the rest of the world experiences their worst day on a Wednesday.
• The best morning peak days fall on a Friday for South Africans unless you live in Cape Town or Bloemfontein, then your best morning would be on a Thursday.
• Johannesburg and East London both experience less congestion in both morning and evening peak times on a Friday.
• On the 8 March 2013 Cape Town experienced 29mm of rain coincidentally this was the city’s most congested day according to the report.

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Read more on:    tomtom  |  cape town  |  south africa

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