More than a week after the coronavirus crisis escalated across the country, the effects of stay-at-home and shelter-in-place policies are becoming clear on America’s roads.
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Those who are still driving in many major cities have had a relatively easy time of it, with nearly empty highways in and around downtown and, according to data from TomTom Traffic, the drop is as substantial as it seems.
In New York on Monday morning, peak congestion was down 47 percent from its 2019 average, while Los Angeles saw a reduction of 51 percent and Seattle, the first U.S. city hard-hit by the virus, down 41 percent. Even Atlanta’s notoriously busy roads experienced 37 percent less congestion than usual.
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As for how long the situation will last, it will be at least another week before most municipalities reevaluate their situations, while traffic in Wuhan, China, where the outbreak began late last year, is still down 50 percent, even as people have started returning to work and restrictions there continue to be eased.