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Drivers warned of increased traffic on M5 as holidays end

Drivers are warned to prepare for a longer trip on the M5 from Exeter to Bristol. Photo: PA

Journeys on the UK's most popular roads could take more than three times longer than usual as the summer holidays end and children return to school, new figures show.

Routes back from the coast, ports and holiday destinations in particular, dominate the list of most congested roads.

In our region, motorists returning from Devon and Cornwall will be especially affected, according to traffic information supplier, Inrix.

Inrix also warns that roads will generally be busiest on Monday September 4 as holidaymakers capitalise on the last few days of the break while other people resume their commutes.

Drivers planning a trip on the M5 northbound from Exeter to Bristol are being warned to prepare for a trip of two hours and five minutes on the route, which takes one hour and 15 minutes in free-flow traffic.

2hrs+
a trip from Exeter to Bristol on the M5 can take up to two times longer than usual.

All good things must come to an end. Sadly for most, the end of the summer holidays heralds a return to work, school and traffic.

Holidaymakers hoping to make the most of the remaining few days should be aware that traffic will be worst on Monday (04 September) afternoon and evening."

– Dr Graham Cookson, Chief Economist, Inrix

Drivers are advised that the shortest distance home may not always be the fastest way and so, alternative routes should be considered.

The 10 most delayed routes in the UK between Thursday 31 August and Tuesday 05 September, according to Inrix, are (peak day routes with the expected journey duration compared with free-flow traffic):

  • M25 clockwise J14-J24 - Thursday - 3.3 times longer
  • M25 clockwise J14-J24 - Saturday - 3.3 times longer
  • M6 southbound J20-J11A - Monday - 2.8 times longer
  • M23 northbound J11-J8 - Saturday/Sunday - 2.8 times longer
  • M6 northbound J11A-J20 - Monday - 2.7 times longer
  • M6 northbound J29-J15 - Thursday - 2.5 times longer
  • M5 northbound J29-J15 - Monday - 2.2 times longer
  • M4 eastbound J32-J47 - Thursday - 2.1 times longer
  • A11 westbound Norwich to Thetford - Monday - 2.0 times longer
  • A66 westbound Scotch Corner to Penrith - Monday - 1.9 times longer