RAC warns of a long ‘Bad’ Friday on the roads this Easter

The RAC Breakdown Cover team is warning anyone planning to getaway this Easter to expect a long ‘Bad’ Friday on the roads as over five million motorists take to their cars for some well-earned time away.

RAC Traffic Watch data shows a total of 16.8m car journeys will be made over the Easter weekend as people make the most of the long weekend visiting family and friends or enjoying a break in the spring weather somewhere different.

RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: “Easter traditionally sees the first big getaway of the year but this time we are expecting an unprecedented number of cars to be using major roads for leisure trips”.

RAC Traffic Watch data predicts Thursday’s leisure trip* volume to be in the region of 3.3m with Saturday seeing 3.9 m journeys and Easter Sunday 4.2m. The peak day for return journeys will, of course, be the bank holiday Monday when we can expect 3.6m heavily packed cars to be heading for home. This means from Maundy Thursday to Bank Holiday Monday there will be over 20m cars using the country’s major roads either heading to or returning from getaway breaks.

Simon Williams added: “The usual main road arteries will inevitably suffer the consequences of so many people trying to getaway for the double bank holiday weekend by car. The advice has to be to head off as early as possible to beat other travellers and to expect heavy traffic and jams on major routes.”

Easter traffic hotspots

• M5 from Bristol to Taunton
• A303 Stonehenge
• A30 and A38 Exeter to Cornwall
• M4 between Cardiff and Swansea
• M25 between Gatwick and M1
• A23/M23 to Brighton
• A11 Norwich to Great Yarmouth
• M55 between Preston and Blackpool
• A14 between Midlands and East Coast
• A66 between M6 and the coast
• M53 between Liverpool and Chester

Highways England is finishing or pausing work on 208 roadworks projects covering around 450 miles over the bank holiday weekend which will mean 97% of routes will be unclogged by 6am on Thursday 24 March.

To help plan a journey, download the free RAC App for iPhone or Android smartphones or visit www.rac.co.uk to use RAC Route Planner, which gives the most up to date road information available including incidents and ongoing roadworks and weather.