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Tomb sweeping traffic sets record in Taiwan
Publication Date : 05-04-2013
A record-setting 530,000 cars entered the freeway system during the free-of-charge period on the first day of Taiwan's Tomb Sweeping holidays, the National Freeway Bureau (NFB) announced yesterday.
The NFB said this is the highest number of cars entering the freeway system during the free-of-charge period since the policy took effect.
According to the NFB, the first day of the four-day Tomb-Sweeping holidays is the peak traveling time of the holidays in Taiwan, with an estimated 2.6 million cars entering the freeway system.
An NFB official said that the bureau had initially expected the freeway rush hour to begin after 7 am. However, the actual rush hour started at around 5 am, with many people leaving home early.
According to the NFB, some sections of the national freeway started experiencing traffic jams from 6 am, with vehicles being forced to drive at 30 to 40 kilometres per hour.
The NFB official said traffic jams tend to take place along the Hsinchu and Chungli sections of the National Highway No. 1, so people should consider entering the freeway system during the free-of-charge period to avoid the traffic jams.
A bus collided with a traffic divider in front of a toll station on National Highway No. 3 yesterday, causing six passengers to be hospitalised for injuries sustained in the accident.
According to local reports, the cause of the accident, in which a shuttle bus commuting between Tucheng District and Sanxia District hit a traffic divider, is still being investigated.
The six injured passengers suffered only minor injuries, according to the police, while the bus driver was not harmed.
The manager of the bus company, Capital Bus, said the driver passed a drunk driving test and had not been working overtime. However, Capital Bus will still be responsible for all medical fees for the passengers.
TransAsia Airways flight number GE351 was delayed for nearly an hour because the captain of the flight was stuck in the traffic jam on National Highway No. 1.
With many people scheduled to travel abroad during the four-day Tomb Sweeping holidays, local reports noted that traffic was moving slowly on the freeway leading to the airport.