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Last Updated: Monday, 14 May 2007, 18:50 GMT 19:50 UK
Smart motoring saves driving time
Map showing routes between Glasgow and Edinburgh
The study compared routes between Edinburgh Airport and Coatbridge
Commuters could save up to an hour a week by using technology to avoid congested routes between Glasgow and Edinburgh, a survey has suggested.

The study, commissioned by motoring organisations, found that the M8 was usually the quickest route between the two cities.

Two cars were used to compare journeys by test drivers over a four-day period.

The Trafficmaster and RAC Foundation report said that on three quarters of those journeys the M8 was fastest.

On the other day, a 25-mile detour via Falkirk proved quicker than using the more direct route.

Delay areas

The survey said: "The regularly congested M8 is often avoided by drivers travelling between these two cities, but it is actually shown to be quicker on all but one occasion for our Virtual Driver."

The Trafficmaster and RAC Foundation report recommends the creation of a national database of roadworks including minor works.

The information would enable drivers and traffic information providers to understand potential delay areas in advance.

We must also change the way we work and time when we commute to reduce congestion and pollution
Edmund King
RAC Foundation executive director

The report said: "We can use today's technology to avoid congestion and take the best routes, not just the obvious ones, to avoid congestion, save time and also reduce our overall environmental impact.

"Congestion hotspots are well known locally so theoretically we are all capable of avoiding them. However, motorists often know little of the alternative routes available to them and rarely have time to prepare an alternative route."

RAC Foundation executive director Edmund King said: "We must get smarter by using traffic information and in-car technology to avoid the worst congestion.

"We must also change the way we work and time when we commute to reduce congestion and pollution. Travelling out of the peak or working from home one day a week can have great benefits for the economy and environment."

Neil Greig of the IAM Motoring Trust said that the study confirmed that the M8 was unable to cope at peak times.


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