According to data analysed by the TomTom HD Traffic Centre, of the ten worst UK traffic jams in July 2011, five occurred on the M25.
Does this make the M25 the most congested and, by extension, the worst motorway in the UK?
I mean, don't get me wrong, the M25, like all motorways, is useful in providing major veins to and from places which allow for commerce, commuting and merriment. But, you know, if it's so congested, can we safely say that it's fulfilling its function well?
The longest tailback was on Friday July 29 at 5.45pm. It stretched from Junction 19 near Watford to Junction 5 at Sevenoaks. That's a traffic jam spanning 49 miles. If you were sat in this tedious trap, we'd love to hear from you. What did you do to pass the time? Maybe you played noughts and crosses in the dust that steadily accumulated on your dashboard. Or perhaps you tapped impatiently on your steering window and dished out furious glowers to all who dared look your way? We'd love to know. Answers to the usual address.
The section of the M25 from Junction 8 at Reigate to Junction 16 (which you might recognise as the M40 interchange) appears twice on TomTom's list with delays of 27.5 miles and 26 miles on the Friday afternoons of July 8 and 22. If this stretch of road is part of your commute, then please accept our condolences, as you appear to be commuting through hell.
Friday 8 July seems to have been a hellish day for everyone, actually. At 3.58pm on this day, there were 1027 miles of jams across the country as a whole. The average jam length at any one time across the whole country in July was 148 miles.
Jesus Christ, that's it. I'm walking.
TomTom want you to know that their HD Traffic is updated every two minutes. It collates delay and congestion information from 80 million mobile phones and one million connected TomTom devices across Europe. This information is then transmitted over the air to sat-nav devices nationwide. In the event of jam, if an alternative route exists that will serve to get you to your destination quicker, then HD Traffic will ruddy well suggest it.
It seems, then, that you have a friend in TomTom.