Nation sees massive traffic on New Year’s Day

By Queena Yen, The China Post

TAIPEI, Taiwan — As it was the first day of the four-day holidays, a large volume of traffic traveling to Southern Taiwan appeared on freeways and provincial highways yesterday morning, according to the National Freeway Bureau (NFB). The NFB also said that the majority of vehicles were expected for Jan. 1, in which an estimated 2.6 million vehicles are forecast to hit the road. In addition, the NFB also estimated that most traffic jams will take place on the southbound freeways in the first two days, while huge traffic flow will be seen on the northbound freeways as people travel back north during the last two days of the long holiday. The NFB said that the traffic flow is expected to decrease day by day, as it estimated 2.3 million to 2.5 million vehicles would be seen on Jan. 2, 2.2 million to 2.4 million on Jan. 3, and 2 million to 2.2 million on the last day.

According to the NFB, the peak hour of the day yesterday was from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., as many motorists traveled on National Freeway No. 1 from Hsinchu (�s��) to Yangmei (����), National Freeway No. 3 from Muzha (���]) to Nangang (�n��), Yingge (�a�q) to Longtan (�s��), Kuaiguan (�֩x) to Wufeng (���p), and National Freeway No. 5 from Shiding (����) to Pinglin (�W�L). The NFB also stated that the speed was no more than 40 kilometers per hour in these regions from around 9-10 a.m. yesterday. In addition, as alternate Freeway rates were implemented since 11 p.m. on Dec. 31, 2014 to 6 a.m. on Jan. 1, more vehicles also appeared during this time compared to last year. According to the NFB, 420,000 vehicles hit the freeways during the special discount period, which is 2.6 times that of last year. The NFB also reminded people that various transportation plans such as alternate rates and vehicle regulations will be launched during the holidays to reduce the traffic congestion. For example, vehicles will still be free of charge from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. from Jan. 2- 4. Therefore, citizens should try to avoid peak hours and utilize these transportation plans to prevent being stuck in the traffic, stated the NFB.