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Quality of Life

Report: Poor Road Conditions Cost Average San Diego Driver $1,900 Annually

Traffic on a San Diego freeway is shown in this file photo, Nov. 22, 2011.
Associated Press
Traffic on a San Diego freeway is shown in this file photo, Nov. 22, 2011.

Poor road conditions in the San Diego area cost the average motorist about $1,900 a year due to higher vehicle costs, traffic crashes and congestion-related delays, according to a report released Wednesday by TRIP, a national transportation research group.

According to TRIP's report, 67 percent of roadways in the San Diego urban area are in poor or mediocre condition, costing the average motorist an additional $722 each year in extra vehicle operating costs, including accelerated vehicle depreciation, additional repair costs and increased fuel consumption and tire wear.

CALIFORNIA TRANSPORTATION BY THE NUMBERS: Meeting the State’s Need for Safe, Smooth and Efficient Mobility
This report was released by Washington, D.C.-based national transportation research group TRIP.
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In addition, traffic congestion in the area is worsening, causing 42 annual hours of delay for the average San Diego motorist and costing each driver $887 annually in lost time and wasted fuel.

Factoring in the costs of crashes in which roadway features likely were a contributing factor, the overall average cost to area motorists is $1,858 per year, the Washington, D.C.-based organization said.

TRIP's survey found that 3 percent of bridges in the San Diego area are structurally deficient and 13 percent are functionally obsolete.

"These conditions are only going to get worse if greater funding is not made available at the state and local levels," said Will Wilkins, TRIP's executive director. "Without adequate investment, California's transportation system will become increasingly deteriorated and congested, hampering economic growth and the quality of life of the state's residents."

The report found that throughout the state, 37 percent of major locally and state-maintained roads are in poor condition and one quarter of California's bridges are structurally deficient or functionally obsolete.

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The state's major urban roads are becoming increasingly congested, with drivers wasting significant amounts of time and fuel each year, and more than 14,000 people were killed in crashes on California's roadways from 2010 to 2014, according to the report.