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Work life balance lost in Auckland's traffic cost

Media statement Friday, October 24th, 2003

Work life balance lost in Auckland's traffic cost

Auckland's 566,000 strong workforce spend an average of just over an hour a day stuck in the traffic, the Employers & Manufacturers Association (Northern) says.

"Travel time is worth a week's holiday every two months," said Alasdair Thompson, EMA's chief executive.

It's costing us all over $4 billion a year.

"At the average pay rate of $19.41 an hour, the time spent getting to and from work is worth $11 million a day, $55 million a week, or over $2.7 billion a year.

"On top of the opportunity time lost, Auckland's motorists use some 1100 million litres of petrol and 500 million litres of diesel a year. These add a further $1.45 billion to transport costs.

"The time and fuel costs combined total over $4 billion a year.

"Costs like these are why we need far more urgency over addressing Auckland's traffic.

"They're the sort of costs that can be reduced to everyone's advantage. Any reductions go straight into all our bank accounts.

"The time cost does not allow for commercial deliveries around the region, hence the $1 billion a year in traffic congestion calculated in 1997 is likely to be conservative.

"Next time you fill up your tank with 50 litres of fuel, $27.25 of it will go in Government taxes and fees but only $6.95 of it will be spent on roads.

"No wonder Auckland's roads are jammed. The Greens Transport Bill will make it worse.

"Our survey simply asked respondents to say how long they're stuck in Auckland's traffic every day. The responses include 10% of people taking 15 minutes or less to get to work and who may walk or cycle right up to the 9% of people who are travelling two hours or more each day to and from their work."


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