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UK's Top 10 Busiest Roads

There are different ways of measuring traffic levels.

Annual Average Daily Flow or AADF for short is one and Traffic Volume is a second way.

Annual Average Daily Flow (AADF) is the daily vehicle average over the course of a year on a particular stretch of road.

Traffic Volume is the total volume of traffic on a stretch of road for the whole year and is calculated by multiplying AADF x  length of road x 365 (or 366 in a leap year).

Graph of the UK's Top 10 Busiest Roads During 2013




The graph shows the top 10 UK business roads reading the colour coded descriptions from left to right and downwards.

This above graph actually refers to the top 10 busiest sections of UK roads, highlighting the traffic hotspots.

So the M25 around Junctions 14 and 15 where to two busiest stretches of UK road during 2013.

In fact the M25 between junctions 11 and 16 are the top 5 busiest strectchs of road in the UK with annual average daily flow of all vehicles from 187,116 vehicles at M25 Junction 11 and 12 up to 227,585 vehicles on the Junction 14 to 15 stretch.

As you can see on a map of the M25 junctions these stretches of the M25 motorway run up and down the western side of the M25 around the Heathrow area.

Around 72.3 Million passengers arrived at or departed from Heathrow during 2013, which was Heathrow's busiest year on record, of which 26 million or 37% never left the airport taking connecting flights. That still leaves just over 46 million passengers exiting Heathrow airport into the local area during 2013 of which are fair proportion would travel by road. The busiest day on record at Heathrow was 30 June 2013 with 238,949 passengers that day. The average 63% leaving the airport would have meant that around 150,000 exited or aarrived at Heathrow that day, some on public transport into London and others entering the road network locally.

On top of the passangers travelling in and out of Heathrow are the people employed at Heathrow. There are approximately 77,000 people working within the Heathrow Airport boundaries and many more in the local area making the western side of the M25 motorway a very busy stretch of motorway.

The M1 Junctions 7 and 8 (Hatfield and Hemel Hempstead) was the 6th busiest stretch of UK road.

The M60 motorway around Manchester at Junctions 12 and 13 was the 7th busiest stretch of UK road where it connects to the M62 motoway to Liverpool.

The remaining top three of the top 10 busiest stretches of UK roads are on on the western side of the M25 motorway.

Cars and taxi cabs far outnumbering other vehicle types.

List of Top 10 Busiest Roads


A list of roads that have the busiest traffic at some part of that road the list of the top 10 busiest roads would be as follows:

  1. M25 (various junctions)
  2. M1 (junctions 7 and 8 and other junctions)
  3. M60 (junctions 12 and 13 and other junctions)
  4. M8 (junctions 4 to 6)
  5. M4 (junctions 4 and 4B and other junctions)
  6. M6 (junctions 20 and 21 and other junctions)
  7. M56 (junctions 3 and 4)
  8. M61 (junctions 2 and 3)
  9. A406 (Redbridge and Waltham Forest)
  10. M42 (junctions 6 to 7A)
But as some of these individual roads stretch a long way with quieter and busier sections a list of this type does not really accurately pin point the traffic hot spots in the same way.

Traffic statistics are based on Department for Transport figures and Heathrow figures are based on Heathrow Airports public facts and figures.


The Number of Fatal Accidents on UK Roads Has Fallen Over the Last 20 years

Every death on UK roads is a tragegy and so many could have been avoided with more care by drivers and other road users.

The number of fatal accidents has dropped over the last 20 years quite substantially which is good progess but we can do better.



In 1992 the number of fatal accidents on UK roads was 4,992.

In 2012 the number of fatal accidents had fallen to 1,754 which is a drop of 35% in 20 years.

Drive carefully, stay alert and be considerate to other road users and hopefully we can all see the number of fatalities keep falling over the next 20 years.

What is the Ratio of Different Types of Vehicles on UK Roads?

OK so we have previously posted in our blog that as of 2013 cars made up around 83% of the 35 Million vehicles registered and licensed for use on UK roads according to DVLA statistics.

But what is the ratio between different types of vehicles?

Cars actually made up 83.2% of vehicles on UK roads in 2013.

HGV's just 1.3% although it might not feel like it at times!

Bus and coaches 0.5%

Vans 9.6% (otherwise known a tailgaters)

Motorcycles 3.5%

Since 1994 cars have increased by 37%, vans (and light goods vehicles) have increased by 57% and motorcycles by 69%

There was a higher rate of increase in motorcycles up to 2010 but the % motorcycles to overall vehicles has declined slightly since 2010, the same applies to HGVs and buses with only cars and vans increasing year on year since 1994.

Since approximately the year 2000 vans as a % of overall vehicles have increased at a faster rate than other vehicle types.

What Is The Ratio of Male to Female Drivers in the UK?

The "White Van Man" predominately male driving "professions" mean that there are a lot more male drivers than female drivers when you also take into account lorry drivers and other factors, right?

A caveat here on the use of the word "profession" based on the crazy tailgating, speeding and generally dangerous driving you can see daily on UK roads by van drivers no doubt in a hurry. Apologies to those van drivers who do actually care about other road users and their safety of course you too often appear the exceptions sadly.

Number of Female Drivers in the UK


Interestingly the DVLA statistics show that 40% of the 29 Million or so private cars in the UK have a female registered keeper and as per the previous post cars are around 83% (2013) of licenced vehicles on the road.

There has been a 72% increase of female registered keepers since 1994 compared to a rise of 21% for males in the same period.

There are are now a greater % of female drivers that ever before.

Ratio of Male to Females in the UK


Department of Health statistics for 2013 show that the ratio of male to female births in the UK were approximately 51 male to 49% female which has been fairly consistent over the last six years or so at least.

In 2007 statistics show there were around 61Million people in the UK of which approximately 51% were male and 49% female.

The Office for National Statistics estimate the total UK population as 63.7 Million in Mid 2012 being an increase of 0.7% or around 420,000 on the previous year.