Why big cities are stuck in traffic jams and how to deal with it

Barleys Traffic | Why big cities are stuck in traffic jams and how to deal with it

Traffic jams are one of the most annoying hallmarks of big cities, and sometimes small towns as well. You can stand in traffic for hours a day, constantly listening to the humming, noisy engines and breathing in exhaust fumes. At the same time, you need to be constantly focused on the road, so as not to miss the moment when the flow moves at least a couple of meters, otherwise clever drivers may try to immediately cut in front of you. But why do cities stand in traffic jams? Let’s take a closer look at this phenomenon, why it occurs, and how to solve this problem.

Too many cars

It’s simple: the more cars, the higher the number of inadequate drivers or those who have bought a license, and the greater the likelihood of accidents and ridiculous situations on the roads. And the ever-growing fleet of cars occupies the same streets that were created with much less traffic in mind. And if 30 years ago, even in megacities, people could safely pass from one point to another, standing only at traffic lights, today, moving along the same streets, they will get stuck in bottle necks where it was empty before.

Drivers do not maintain a constant speed

One of the big problems is that we’re all different. Some react very quickly, others, on the contrary, are slow to react. As a result, there is a mess of cars moving randomly on the road, and such a phenomenon as average flow speed simply disappears. Moreover, in dense traffic even experienced drivers due to constant slowing down and acceleration cease to realize that their movement has become jerky and untimely. In this case, all it takes is at least one person moving at the beginning of the flow and slowing down for all the cars following him to slow down as well. This results in a shorter distance between cars, and as a result, little or no opportunity to maneuver.

Stable traffic is impeded by obstacles

The larger the city, the more cars there are, and the higher the likelihood of accidents, in which the participants often completely block a lane or even the entire roadway. In addition, roadworks, constrictions, crosswalks, tramway crossings and similar things become an obstacle. If you combine the obstacle with unstable flow speeds, you get a bottle neck that everyone will try to squeeze through at once, which increases the risk of accidents and a complete stoppage of flow.

Drivers misjudge the ability to accelerate

Traffic jams don’t occur instantly, but start with a little congestion. When a driver stops behind another car and is distracted by something, seeing that the flow ahead has begun to move, he or she accelerates excessively to prevent cars from the adjacent lanes from realigning themselves. At the same time, at the very edge of the congestion, other drivers think the same and start accelerating sharply. Those behind the previous stop line mistakenly think that the lanes ahead are free, drawing this logical conclusion from the average speed of the flow of traffic. As a result, quite a few cars get into the intersection, not having time to complete its passage at the traffic light, and block the path of those traffic participants who are moving perpendicularly. At this point, a kind of lock occurs, where cars on four sides block each other’s movement.

Most cars move on the roads at certain times

There’s such a term as “rush hour”. The essence of it is that at certain times everyone goes one way and at other times the opposite way. Typically, cars move toward downtown in the morning and rush hour occurs between 8 and 9 am.. In the evening, it falls between 6 and 7 o’clock. During these hours, the maximum amount of traffic hits the roads, which inevitably leads to congestion and then traffic jams.

How to solve traffic jams

The most important thing to do is to internalize the driving culture and realize that you are not alone on the road and all drivers are equal to each other. It is selfishness and disregard for other road users that often leads to inadequate and dangerous maneuvers. By learning the culture of driving, knowing the rules of the road and respecting each other, we will make the roads run smoother.

Another is the reduction of personal transportation in favor of public transportation. Of course, we are not talking about the current buses and streetcars, but about comfortable transportation that will run at the shortest possible intervals. In this case, people will be more willing to take public transportation, knowing that they will not be squeezed by crowds and that they will not have to stand in traffic like other road users.

As for widening roads or even building city highways, that’s not the answer. The experience of large cities like Los Angeles, where the metropolis is crisscrossed by a vast network of highways, has shown that such a solution only leads to increased traffic and even more pollution and congestion.

Also, in order to relieve traffic congestion, floating hours can be practiced so that the mass of people do not rush in one direction at a certain time interval. All these actions will help to significantly relieve traffic and make life in the big city more pleasant.

Recent Blogs