Greater Manchester suffers from some of the worst traffic congestion in the country, new research has shown.
Statistics from traffic information company INRIX shows that Manchester-based traffic delays were second only to London in the UK last year.
Moreover, there were only three countries with poorer road conditions than those in England across the whole of Europe.
Based on rush-hour commute-to-city travel in 2011, the figures revealed that UK drivers spent 32 hours of the year stuck in traffic, although this was four hours less than in 2010.
Manchester commuters, however, can expect to be held up for an average of 45 hours per year in their commute, a figure of just under an hour each and every working week.
Broken down even further, the results published by INRIX suggested that the worst travel time for Mancunians is every Tuesday, between 9 and 10am.
Neil Greig, from the Institute of Advanced Motoring (IAM), says that motorists should be more aware of the dangers of rush hour delays.
He said: “Preparation and information is the key. We now have more sources than ever of good quality up-to-the-minute traffic information that drivers can trust.
“Drivers can now check for hotspots and any sudden incidents through local radio, websites, roadside electronic signs, sat navs and mobile phone apps and take avoiding action in good time.”
All 18 UK cities analysed had fewer jams last year than in 2010, with Friday being the worst traffic day and Tuesday being the worst weekday morning.
The best weekday for traffic in the UK last year was Monday, with the worst commuting hour being 9am to 10am on Tuesdays and the best being 7am to 8am on Fridays.
Mr Greig claimed that there are limits to the amount this figure can be reduced.
He said that public transport was only viable if it can be made attractive and cheap enough and goes where drivers want to go.
He added: “In Manchester most people travelling into the city centre for the standard nine to five type job already use public transport because it makes sense.
“Today, however, more journeys are across and around town as jobs and homes are further apart and services are dispersed across the city. Public transport struggles to cope with anything other than moving lots of people into and out of a city centre.
More park and ride opportunities and better journey time information would help direct drivers to the right alternative for them. Encouraging cycling without providing the right segregated facilities risks raising cycling deaths and injuries and we are already starting to see that trend. Car-pooling will only ever have a limited impact as more and more people work flexible hours.”
The UK’s most congested cities in 2011 were the London commuter zone, with a 66 hour delay average across the year, Greater Manchester with 45 hours and Liverpool, suffering 39 hours of hold-ups. Birmingham, Belfast, Newcastle, Nottinghamshire, Leeds, Sheffield and Edinburgh completed the top 10, all suffering average delays upwards of 30 hours.