One vehicle can make collective fuel loss quite heavy: Study

What happens when a single vehicle is added to peak traffic at a busy road stretch? It delays all the vehicles on the stretch by a few seconds. This may not seem much but if fuel consumption of the vehicles is added up for these few seconds, the loss is quite considerable.

CMD Solutions, a Pune-based software development company, has quantified this in a study,which shows that addition of a vehicle on a busy chowk in the city during peak-hour traffic translates into a collective additional fuel consumption of an average of around 13 to 14 litres. The loss varies with the length of the stretch. For the 32-km Hinjewadi-Magarpatta stretch, the delay caused by addition of one vehicle is 0.2 seconds and the fuel loss (collective) is 7 litres.

CMD Solutions team including Nidhi Goel, Prithvipal Singh, Sumit Dagariya, Gurpreet Mukhraiyaa, Amol Rajpoot and Ajay Shrivastava, started researching for the study over a month back. Some of the chowks where they observed peak-hour traffic, between 9 am and 10 am and 6 pm and 7 pm, are Hinjewadi IT Park, Vimannagar, Swargate and Magarpatta Road.

"For comparative figures, we visited these areas in lean hours too like midnight or early morning hours," says Goel, who heads the project titled Traffic Load and Fuel Loss.

Giving details of how they calculated it, Goel said, for instance, during low-traffic hours, a distance of 32 km between Hinjewadi and Magarpatta can be covered in 45 minutes. The same takes 2 hours 30 minutes during peak hours, say between 6 pm and 7 pm or 9 am and 10 am. "Our survey says if we add another vehicle in peak hours, it increase travel time by 0.2 seconds for all the vehicles on the route," said Singh, a developer with the firm. For an individual, 0.2 seconds may not matter but if we take the collective loss of 0.2 seconds by all vehicle on route, it is considerable. The collective increase in driving hours comes to around 2.7 hours (see box).

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