City News Service
The average San Diego driver lost 37 hours to traffic congestion in 2009, at a cost of $838, according to a study released Thursday.
Area drivers used an extra 31 gallons of gasoline because of traffic jams, according to the 2010 Urban Mobility Report from the Texas Transportation Institute at Texas A&M University.
San Diego ranked 18th among large U.S. urban areas for hours lost because of heavy traffic and extra gasoline use, and 20th for the financial impact, according to the report.
The hours lost by area drivers were down by four from 2008, but up four from 1999. In 1982, San Diegans wasted eight hours to congestion, according to the report.
The worst areas for commuting by car were Chicago and the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, where drivers wasted 70 hours per year in their vehicles.
The report stated that there was less congestion in recent years nationally because of the weak economy, but that increasing economic activity has led to greater traffic on roadways.