Motorists braced for busy Christmas getaway

Motorists braced for busy Christmas getaway

Millions of Britons travelling by car to see family and friends over Christmas will be hoping for a smooth ride.

The annual festive getaway always leads to heavy congestion on the roads across the country, and as many as 31 million car journeys are expected to take place in nine days up to and including Boxing Day.

To improve journey times, Highways England set itself the target of completing or lifting 148 road works by 6am on Wednesday, leaving 98% of its 9,534-mile network free of roadworks in time for the holiday period.

RAC Traffic Watch spokesman Rod Dennis says: "Around 11 million separate Christmas-related car journeys will take place between Christmas Eve and Boxing Day, and this is consistent with previous years - but motorists may benefit from traffic flows that are more evenly spaced out this year, perhaps as a result of schools breaking up a full week before Christmas Day.

"Christmas Eve is set to be the most hectic and it's a good idea motorists plan ahead for that now. While there are 101 different things to think about before the big day, performing some basic maintenance such as checking oil and coolant levels, and making sure tyres are inflated properly can go a long way towards making the Christmas getaway journey a little smoother."

The Merstham Interchange on the M25 in Surrey, the A4 westbound from Earl's Court to Reading and the M5 southbound from Stroud to Gordano are expected to be some of the worst routes for congestion.

Copyright Press Association 2015. Motoring News articles do not reflect the RAC's views unless clearly stated.