Living in locked down SoCal California but traffic is still the exact same as it was last month

In my city traffic patterns have not changed at all despite the fact we’re all being told to shelter in place. Still plenty of traffic at normal “working” hours so there’s a ton of people on the roads at 8am and 5pm, then there’s another huge burst of people driving around at 8pm. I at least have the excuse I have to work but just last night I was seeing houses with a tons of cars in front of them which made it seem like people were still having their normal Saturday night parties.

Anyone else see no difference in traffic in a lock-down state?

Here in the SF Bay area, rush hour traffic is virtually non-existent (based on what I see on the daily local news). The Bay Bridge looks like it might at 6 am on Christmas Day, everyone just sailing through without slowing down (except for the toll booths). It probably helps a little that they have taken live toll takers out of the mix and will send you a bill for your toll if you don’t have one of those automatic things.

I love driving around with no traffic, but this seems kind of eerie, probably because I know what is behind it, and I have seen too many sci-fi post-apocalyptic movies. Trying to maintain perspective.

Have you ever seen this?

Also Bay Area, and ditto. And this goes for local streets also. While out walking I cross a usually busy street - very few cars on it now.

Walking around reminds me of walking Thanksgiving Day when everone is eating or Christmas.

The supermarket lot is still crowded, though.

Summit County Colorado, a big ski resort area, is a ghost town. This is usually one of our busiest months with spring break and all.

I’m in Chicago although haven’t been on the expressways. I stood in the middle of what would normally be very busy streets and made Instagram videos.

The best way to describe the traffic this AM is 7AM Christmas morning.

Lots of people have essential jobs

I’m in LA. There’s noticeably less traffic than usual, though not so little as to be spooky.

We’re not under lockdown here in MA, and rush hour traffic is noticeably way, way down. I’m about 20 miles north of Boston, and the highway is full speed at both rush hours when normally it would be down to 10-20 mph. And Boston was a ghost town when I had to pick up my daughter from college last Monday.

Well, it seems there are in fact fewer cars on the road, as pollution has been substantially reduced:

I’ve seen about a 50-75% reduction in traffic along my commute. I’m curious what others are seeing.

Agreed. I drive on the 405 daily on my way to work (defense contractor, so “essential”). It’s not empty by any means, but it’s sparse and traffic is flying. 75-80 mph has you generally moving with traffic, but there are plenty of people going faster than that - and this is at the height of “rush hour.”

A drive that normally takes me 45-65 minutes now takes about 20. It was a bit longer this evening because of pretty heavy rain - that actually slowed people down some, and I passed a couple of minor wrecks (which caused remarkably short backups).

It’s definitely been decreased here; driving to work is rarely busy but from work is often very busy (for Tucson). Lately, though, it’s been dead.

I wish I could actually experience this lighter traffic that everybody’s been commenting on, because I don’t really see it.

Medium sized city in the southeast US. County ordered “stay at home” ordinance, except for food provisioning and work ( for essential employees ). As an essential employee, with the paper form to prove it, should I have to to the police or whoever, my travel routine is largely unchanged.

My observation:

Marginally lighter traffic on the interstates. In this urban sprawl crazed area, LOTS of construction related vehicles still seen: dump trucks by the multitude, tractor-trailers with building materials, lots of contractor vehicle traffic.

The local areas are every bit the congested mess they ever were, though most stores and malls are closed, Personal vehicles, tons of commercial-related trucks, every other pickup truck is hauling a trailer with riding mowers. The same intersections I dread still take up to 2 light changes to get through.

I’ve been looking at various cities in Google Maps during commute hours. Here in the Bay Area, all the roads are completely green. This would have been unbelievable two months ago. During commute hours, there’s normally red everywhere. I’ve looked at various other big cities in the last few days and have never found any red anywhere during commute hours.

Sounds like people aren’t taking shelter in place all that seriously. In the Bay Area rush hour extended from 6 am - 10 am and sometimes later, and from 2 pm - 8 pm. Now, nothing. They are starting to work on road repair during the daylight hours because of lack of traffic. I was walking at 5:30 pm Monday and a usually busy major road had no cars on it for a half mile in each direction. Kids were playing soccer in the street on a smaller but also busy road.
They also shut down most construction and yard men are not supposed to come if the work is for appearance sake only - though ours just showed up.

I haven’t left our immediate neighborhood (about 1.5 miles in any direction) in about 2 weeks - and the time 2+ weeks ago was a mid-weekday jaunt to Costco. That trip, traffic was perhaps a bit lighter than usual for midday but it’s rare for me to go that direction, so I couldn’t be sure.

The other local trips, there have always been cars. Not rush-hour, definitely lighter than usual. Not “Christmas morning at 7 AM” though.

The parking lots are a bit creepy though. By the grocery stores, there are cars - but when I drove by the WalMart, its lot was nearly empty. I think the store is still open because they carry some groceries and hardware, though I haven’t gone in to check it out. I intentionally took a different route home, about a mile out of the way, to see what traffic was like - and between lighter than usual, and the fact that it was twilight, it was definitely creepy.

I got takeout the other day from a local shopping center. They had just closed the anchor store (a grocery store) as things were hitting the fan. I’ve never been able to park that easily there. Ditto at a different shopping center: at THAT one the grocery store closed about 2 years ago, so it’s been depressing for a while. They finally got that space re-leased… to a big fitness center chain… that opened up in late February. Talk about lousy timing!!!

Traffic is way down in my dense Chicago neighborhood. So are gas prices!

I went to the grocery store on Monday. On the way home I hit all 12 traffic lights green. That never happens.

It seems when you drive at the right speed they are actually timed properly, but with lots of others on the road, you usually can never go the right speed. So around here, people are actually staying in.

Last week I went over to check on my shop, about a 20 mile drive, and there were entire stretches where I was the only car I could see. Kinda spooky.

South of England (south of London) reporting in: I would say there is a 60 to 70% reduction in traffic volumes, maybe even more. I ride a bike, and the roads are a completely different experience at the moment.

The only increase I have seen - in the last week or so I have passed three hearses in the course of a ride - twice. I don’t remember that ever happening before once. I just hope it’s a mix of coincidence and confirmation bias.


ETA: riding a bike is permitted exercise