Non-traffic causes of traffic congestion

Michael Giberson

Is this an unpriced external effect of shooting off fireworks on July 4?

July 5 tends to have an unusual number of animal-related traffic problems, as pets, spooked by the fireworks on the previous day, have a greater propensity to wander onto freeways.

From Eric Morris at the Freakonomicsblog, “Road Blocks: The Strange Things That Cause Traffic.”

Other non-traffic contributors to traffic congestion mentioned in the article: oil spills, antifreeze, oranges, lemons, livestock, wild animals, abandoned pets, suicides, homicides, discarded Christmas trees, and furniture and appliances including couches, chairs, refrigerators, and stoves.

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4 thoughts on “Non-traffic causes of traffic congestion

  1. I can think of at least two times that cash falling out of an Armored Car has caused traffic problems in my area.

  2. Except that the guards are low paid low skill employees who own neither the cargo nor the truck.

  3. One-speed bikes, cyclist transmission wonks, breaking news, WoW newsfeeds/twitter, and roadside diners that look awful as you approach don’t even rate! After car motion err, it’s like there’s a three-emergency-vehicle threshold?

    Here I thought Memorial Day would find us holding short on Ghoulish Stories (i.e. rubbernecking,) as Eric Morris put it. So much for the flavor of a new administration…

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