Have roads returned to normal? Traffic in June is ‘exceeding pre-pandemic levels’ – and lockdowns saw a rise in drivers crashing into parked vehicles, says new report
- AX says traffic levels in June so far are exceeding February 2020 by 1.5%
- In the peak of the first lockdown in said journeys fell to levels last seen in 1960s
- Some 16 months of restrictions has also seen a shift in accident types
- There’s been a huge rise in drivers crashing into parked cars, making this by far the most common collision type
Traffic levels are back to how they were before the Covid-19 pandemic struck early last year, according to a new report released today,
In fact, analysis of driving this month shows that journey levels are exceeding those from February 2020, according to telematics data firm, AX.
A review of accident statistics also shows that lockdowns over the course of the last 16 months has seen a rise in motorists colliding into parked vehicles, making it the most common crash type ahead of rear-end shunts.
Have roads returned to normal? A new report claims traffic levels are higher in June than they were in February 2020
New analysis by AX found that the first lockdown saw road traffic levels fall to an equivalent to congestion in the late 1960s.
The average daily mileage of vehicles – which are usually fleet models – equipped with AX’s telematics devices fell 67 per cent in April 2020, compared to the February before lockdown started.
The lockdown this January also had a notable impact on traffic levels, with a 40 per cent decrease in average daily mileage, meaning traffic was likely comparable to that last experienced in the late 1980s.
Following the easing of most social distancing restrictions over the last few months, and with travel now allowed anywhere within the UK, road traffic volumes appear to have returned to normality, with levels in June so far actually exceeding February 2020 by 1.5 per cent.
Additional data from the Department for Transport shows traffic on some weekends has reached as much as 113 per cent of pre-Covid levels since late May.
Analysis of telematics data suggests traffic levels could now be higher than before the Covid-19 pandemic hit
New analysis by AX found that the first lockdown saw road traffic levels fall to an equivalent to congestion in the late 1960s
AX also found evidence of a dramatic shift in the two most common types of accidents it has managed throughout the pandemic.
While fewer rear end collisions occurred, proportionally more claims involved being ‘hit while parked’, likely due to a significant increase in the amount of time vehicles have spent unused at the roadside during restrictions.
For instance, during the first lockdown, rear end collisions accounted for just 14 per cent of collisions (compared to nearly a third in the previous February), while ‘hit while parked’ collisions rocketed from a quarter of managed collisions to 44 per cent.
Proportionally, AX said there had been more claims from drivers whose cars had been ‘hit while parked’ during lockdowns
These are the two most common types of road collisions. Hitting parked cars surged in April and in January when national lockdowns were at a peak
Vince Powell, Managing Director of AX Innovation said: ‘By looking at our extensive telematics data, we’ve been able to see just how drastic the impacts of the various UK lockdowns have been over the last 15 months.
‘What’s interesting to see is how the impact of each lockdown has differed and the various rates at which things have returned to relative normality as restrictions are eased.
‘The first lockdown in April 2020 had by far the biggest impact on road transport, even when compared to January of this year when covid had hit the UK hardest.
‘And with more vehicles spending more time parked up during lockdowns, we’ve also noticed a striking shift in the two most common types of accident we manage, with parked vehicles being hit now dominating over rear end collisions.’
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