The American Transportation Research Institute recently released its top highway bottlenecks list for 2023. All truck drivers sometime or another have sat in these bottlenecks, losing money if they are paid by the mile.
Truckers should memorize these areas and try to plan their routes around them if possible and if they have to travel through them, plan to do so during lighter traffic flows. The ATRI list comes with some animations of traffic patterns so drivers can see when and how widespread the traffic backups become.
The worst traffic backup in the U.S. will always be the George Washington Bridge
If you have hauled any freight up I-95 through New Jersey, you should know that at the end of the road lies the iconic George Washington Bridge, and its $100 truck toll. You would think that the high price to pay to get onto Manhattan Island would persuade you to take other truck routes, but it doesn’t slow down trucks from heading that way.
The main thing that slows the drivers down is the sorting of vehicles into the toll booth lanes. During early morning hours and near midnight, the traffic backup becomes legendary, slowing to less than walking speed as the multiple lanes of traffic filter into the few available lanes.
There are a few ways around the G.W. Bridge, but they are not quick detours. You could use I-287 to go around the entirety of New York City, but that would add an hour or more to take the loop.
What are the other bottlenecks in the Top 10?
Six other cities have intersections in the Top 10. Houston, TX, Atlanta, GA, Nashville, TN, Chicago, IL, and Los Angeles and San Bernardino, CA. make up the remainder of the worst bottlenecks.
Atlanta is one of the worst offenders with its intersections making up 25% of the Top 20. It seems every major intersection of the I-285 Perimeter Loop is having issues with maintaining constant traffic flow.
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