Motorists in the South West urged NOT to travel on 'Frantic Friday'

Motorists in the South West urged NOT to travel on 'Frantic Friday'

Are you ready for Frantic Friday?

The day when record numbers of motorists hit the road to get away for Christmas is fast approaching.



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In fact it’s set to be so busy that a leading motoring firm has advised people not to travel on this day at all.

Read on to find out the best (and worst) times to travel.

Roads

The RAC has dubbed Friday, December 22 ‘Frantic Friday’ as the last of the year’s commuter traffic clashes with people travelling to visit family and friends.

A survey of its drivers predicted there will be 1.25 million leisure trips made on the roads on Friday, compared to 1.59 million on Saturday, Cambridge News reports.

Christmas Eve will see the leisure traffic peak as 1.87 million drivers attempt their festive getaways but Friday is still earmarked to be the most congested due to the addition of commuter traffic.

But all this will be eclipsed by the 5.3 million predicted journeys on Boxing Day as people get out to the sales.

The RAC says the anticipated busiest times to travel on the roads are:

  • Friday, December 22 between 4pm and 8pm;
  • Sunday, December 24 between 10am and 2pm; and
  • Tuesday, December 26 between 10am and 2pm.

RAC traffic spokesman Rod Dennis said: “The roads are traditionally busy in the run-up to Christmas , especially when you have commuters, commercial and leisure traffic all competing for space.

“Things tend to get worse on the last working day before Christmas, with ‘Frantic Friday’ this year falling on the December 22.

The collision occurred on the M4 between junctions 16 and 17 eastbound

“We strongly urge drivers planning long journeys to avoid this day if they possibly can.

“We’re then expecting pre-Christmas leisure trips to peak on Christmas Eve, with getaway traffic combining with the inevitable dashes to the shops for last-minute Christmas presents.”

A spokesman for the AA said 39 per cent of its members in the east of England were planning to make a journey of 20 miles or more on Friday.

This figure dropped to 34 per cent on Saturday and 27 per cent on Christmas Eve.

Highways England announced yesterday (December 18) it would lift around 400 miles of roadworks across England, leaving almost 99 per cent of motorways and strategic A roads roadworks-free in time for Christmas.

All roadworks will be lifted or completed by 6am on December 22 until just after midnight on January 2.

Trains

Great Western Railway is running no trains on December 25 or 26.

And on December 24 and 27 there will be no trains to or from London Paddington.

The Bath Chronicle has launched a WhatsApp group to help you keep up to date with the latest news. If you’d like to receive breaking news alerts, save the number 07939 497390 to your phone – we recommend saving the contact as ‘Bath Chronicle News’ – then send the word NEWS to us via WhatsApp. We will send you a maximum of four messages a day and your phone number won’t be shared with other members of the group or used for any other purpose. Tommy Lumby

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