Beijing weekend traffic jams expected

24 Sep 2010

Tremendous traffic gridlocks in Beijing are expected this weekend, authorities warned.

Workers have had three days off during the week to mark the popular Mid-Autumn Festival, but have return to work over the weekend to make up for lost time.

The Beijing Road Traffic Bureau predicted increased traffic flows tomorrow, Saturday and Sunday, with morning rush hour expected to start earlier than usual, and evening peak time also prolonged. In recent months, Beijing has been gaining notoriety for bottlenecks, a problem that seems to be getting worse.

In August, a traffic jam, stretching more than 100km on a highway linking the capital to Inner Mongolia, reportedly lasted for over a week. It consisted of trucks stood bumper to bumper.

The number of vehicles on Beijing's roads currently stands at around 4.5 million and is expected to hit five million by year-end. Last year, China surged ahead of the US as the world’s largest car market.

Margie T Logarta

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