Los Angeles Dodges Worst Labor Day Traffic Nationwide I-5 Beats the 405 as the most congested corridor for West Coast holiday travel

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 28, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --Every Labor Day, millions of Americans hit the road for one "last" summer weekend, and 2012 will be no different according to INRIX, the leading provider of traffic information.  INRIX predicts that Los Angeles, the second-most congested city in the U.S.,(1) will also claim the second spot for the worst cities for Labor Day Weekend road-trippers.

"Our analysis of traffic trends in Los Angeles combined with larger trends showing consumer spending on the rebound provides the perfect formula for Labor Day Getaway gridlock," said Jim Bak, INRIX Director of Community Relations.  "INRIX's advice to travelers is to depart before noon on Friday or wait until after 9 p.m. to avoid spending your first day of the holiday idle in traffic.  If you can wait to leave until Saturday morning, Angelinos will find smooth sailing until traffic starts to slow down again between 1 and 2 p.m."

Key insights from INRIX's Los Angeles area research include:

  • Travelers leaving Los Angeles will have the best luck traveling before noon on Friday or waiting until after 9 p.m. that night. Those leaving on Saturday should leave between 9 – 10 a.m.
  • I-5 will be one of the most congested corridors for holiday travel on the west coast, with travels times as much as 3x longer than normal in some areas
  • Families looking to take a trip to Disneyland should leave early in the morning, as major routes heading down to Anaheim will be congested starting at 1 p.m. until the late evening.

With a combination of weekend travelers and commuters clogging L.A.'s roads on Friday afternoon, drivers can expect a typical trip to take twice as long as it would on a normal traffic choked afternoon.  Given the expected increase in the number of holiday travelers, combined with ongoing road construction and unexpected delays due to accidents and other incidents, Bak advises travelers to use free tools like the INRIX Traffic app, to ease drivers' getaways trips with up-to-the-minute information about traffic conditions, the fastest routes and travel times.

Additional information about traffic delays heading to popular road trip destinations for Los Angeles residents is as follows:


Worst Time to


Best Time to



5-6 p.m.

By Noon or

 after 9 p.m.


1-2 p.m.

9 a.m. – 10 a.m.

The majority of congestion in the LA will build after 2:30 p.m. and remain relentless until around 8 p.m.

Interstate 5 will be one of the most congested corridors for holiday travel on the West Coast. On Friday, the southbound Santa Ana Freeway will become slow from midday and remain solid throughout the prolonged rush hour. Average speeds of 20 mph will cause trips to take 3x longer than a typical gridlocked Friday afternoon.  Additionally, traffic will crawl at an avg. speed of 20 mph LAX to downtown.   After 7 p.m. travelers further south can expect 30 minute delays along the eastbound San Diego Freeway from Long Beach Airport until the I-5 interchange.

Los Angeles to Anaheim (Disneyland)
Traffic will be busiest on Saturday around the Park from 1 p.m. until the late evening.


Interstate 5

(Santa Ana Freeway)

Length of Journey

27.3 miles  (35 minutes)

Worst Corridor

Santa Fe Springs

Average Speed


Friday Travel Time


1 hour 22 minutes

Los Angeles to Huntington Beach
Traffic heading to Long Beach or Huntington Beach will be slowest on Saturday from 11 a.m., although congestion is not usually especially significant over the Labor Day weekend.


I-110 and

Pacific Coast Highway

Length of Journey

46 miles (1 hour 10 minutes)

Worst Corridor

Long Beach Harbor

Average Speed


Friday Travel Time


1 hour 32 minutes

Los Angeles to Santa Barbara and Ojai
Taking the Ventura Freeway towards the Los Padres National Forest, traffic doesn't become notably congested until Saturday from 2 p.m.


US 101

(Ventura Highway)

Length of Journey

95 miles (1 hour 45 mins)

Worst Corridor

405 interchange

Average Speed


Friday Travel Time


2 hours 47 minutes

Los Angeles to Palm Springs
Both I-10 and the Pomona Freeway will be heavy on Friday from 3 p.m. until almost 8 p.m. Once traffic reaches the River Freeway near San Bernardino delays break up and traffic will run at almost free flow until Palm Springs.


I-10 E


(Pomona Freeway)

Length of Journey

107 miles (1 hour 55 minutes)

107 miles (1 hour 54 minutes)

Worst Corridor

605 Interchange

Between I-15 and I-215

Average Speed



Friday Travel Time


3 hours 14 minutes

2 hours 55 minutes

INRIX® is the largest global traffic intelligence platform in the world, delivering smart data and analytics to solve transportation issues worldwide. INRIX crowd sources data daily from more than 100 million vehicles and devices to deliver traffic and driving-related insight, as well as sophisticated analytical tools and services, across six industries in 31 countries.

With more than 200 customers and partners including Audi AG, ADAC, ANWB, BMW, the BBC, Ford Motor Company, the I-95 Coalition, MapQuest, Microsoft, NAVIGON, Nissan, O2, Tele Atlas, Telmap, Toyota and Vodafone, INRIX's real-time traffic information and traffic forecasts help drivers save time every day.  To experience the traffic technology revolution behind the next generation of transportation, navigation and location-based service applications, visit www.INRIX.com.

(1) As determined by the 2011 INRIX Traffic Scorecard, released May 2012.  For more information, see http://scorecard.inrix.com.



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