The longer the coronavirus pandemic progresses, the more we get an idea of its effects on numerous aspects of our lives. And while the crisis’ economic fallout has caught the most attention in recent weeks, it is worth looking at the impact of COVID-19 from different angles as well.
According to data recently published by the U.S. Federal Highway Administration, road traffic in the United States fell by more than 25 percent in the second quarter as lockdowns and stay-at-home orders severely limited people’s mobility. With 626 billion vehicle miles travelled, total traffic on all roads and streets in the U.S. fell to the lowest level since 1995 in the second quarter.
While that alone is interesting, there could also be a huge economic benefit in the steep decline in road traffic. According to estimates from Upwork, American commuters are saving more than $750 million a day by not driving to work. While this figure sounds outlandish at first, it’s important to note that it includes direct costs as well as the time value usually spent commuting.