Brighton and surrounding areas, including Rottingdean, are blighted by congestion
BUSINESSES are bearing the brunt of traffic congestion in Brighton and Hove.
A study by telematics company TomTom has found heavy traffic in the city is costing businesses more than £10.5 million across one year.
That is an increase of £1.26 million in the past year, according to the figures of the TomTom Traffic Index, which measures congestion on the road networks of 390 cities around the world.
The cost is based on the amount of working hours lost from time sitting in traffic.
It found congestion in Brighton and Hove increases the time each commercial vehicle driver spends on the road by an average of 135 hours a year, which is up from 129 in 2016.
That breaks down into the average driver wasting more than 17 working days a year sitting in traffic, with the number of vehicles on the road standing at 10,900.
The figures place Brighton and Hove fifth on the national rankings, with the city seeing a 36 per cent rise in congestion compared to last year.
The city remains the fifth-highest for congestion, as it was in the 2016 TomTom Traffic Index.
Belfast has the highest congestion rate out of all the cities in the UK and Ireland, while London stands well above the rest in terms of cost of congestion.
Businesses in the capital lose out on £264,516,480, according to TomTom, because of the traffic in the city, with a total of 241,700 commercial vehicles recorded in the study.
London ranks third of all cities in congestion rates, moving down from its second spot last year. Manchester is fourth.
Beverley Wise, director of TomTom Telematics for the UK and Ireland, said: “Traffic remains a serious issue for business and the resulting delays have potential implications for productivity, customer service standards and even employee wellbeing.
“Unfortunately, congestion levels continue to rise and the UK economy is paying the price for this at a time when the landscape is already challenging enough, with the growth rate now expected to be just 1.5 per cent this year.
A spokesman for Brighton and Hove City Council said the authority is aware of the congestion problem and this is the reason it promotes other modes of transport.
He said: “We are acutely aware of congestion in the city.
“That’s why we’re pursuing transport policies to promote alternatives to the car such as buses, cycling and walking.
“As a result there has been a huge increase in cycling in the last ten years and levels of bus travel are among the highest in the country.”
Source: The Argus