It’s back. That 60-mile long traffic jam on the road from Beijing to Mongolia, cleared by authorities two weeks ago, has reappeared. Latest reports put it at 75 miles long. The stated cause of the jam is a construction project that isn’t scheduled to be completed until September 17th. I guess it’s a testament to impatience, ignorance and desperation. You would think some of the drivers stuck on the road could have postponed their trip for two more weeks. But planning obviously is not a strong suit for the human species.
It’s not just rapidly developing countries that produce massive traffic jams. It turns out the French hold the Guinness World Record for longest jam: 109 miles stretching from Lyon toward Paris on February 16, 1980, and 18 million Germans were bumper to bumper on April 12, 1990. Clearly, you can run into trouble anywhere.
If you’re planning a road trip overseas, you don’t currently have a lot of resources to help you avoid jams, although web cams are proliferating. It’s only just started carrying international destinations (U.K., Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Denmark), but www.trafficland.com has the potential to become the worldwide traffic web cam portal. Do you know of any others?
Photo by Cory M. Grenier