9-Day Traffic Jam in China Strands Thousands of Drivers
August 23, 2010 at 1:50 pm
A nine-day traffic jam outside Beijing has drivers fuming, street vendors turning a quick profit and Chinese traffic authorities struggling for answers.
Traffic has been slowed to a crawl since August 14 on a 100-kilometer stretch of National Expressway 110 that runs between Beijing and Heibei province. Officials say the jam is caused by an increase in trucks carrying goods to Beijing and by highway maintenance work along the route.
The tie-up also reflects the rapidly increasing number of cars on the road in China, which has become the world’s largest market for automobiles.
Not everyone is unhappy, however. The official Xinhua news agency says that, while drivers suffer, local residents are seizing the opportunity to sell food to the thousands of stranded motorists at inflated prices.
Authorities expect the congestion to last until workers complete the road maintenance project around mid-September.
Some information in this story was provided by AFP and Reuters.
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