Drivers face a drop in average speed during rush hour

Typical scene during rush hour. A traffic jam with rows of cars.  Shallow depth of field.

The average speed of rush-hour traffic has tumbled thanks to a stronger economy and cheaper fuel.

During morning rush-hour, motorists now face an average speed of 24mph nationwide and just 15mph in London.

Cheaper fuel has pushed more people to drive to work, with van traffic making up the bulk of the numbers. The number of vehicles on the road has increased by up to 2.3 per cent, resulting in gridlock for Britain's largest cities.

Incredibly, 314.6 billion miles have been covered by vehicles in Britain in the 12 months prior to June.

A report published recently told the Daily Mail: "lower fuel prices may have contributed to increased traffic".

Each area of the road network has become busier, with even rural roads seeing a 5.5 per cent increase in traffic.

High rainfall has also been blamed for the lower average speeds on Britain's roads, with some area experiencing unseasonably wet weather resulting in road closures.

Claire Francis, of the transport charity Sustrans, told the Daily Mail: "Unfortunately the consequence will include increased congestion, less active travel and worse air quality."

The AA also told the Daily Mail: "Much of this growth is being driven by white van man as the economy improves."

This increase in traffic on Britain's road could be attributed to the country's growth in GDP. As people have been able to spend more on travel, so they have taken to the roads rather than taking public transport.

This reason 2.3 per cent rise in traffic tops the figure taken in 2007, just prior to the financial crash.