Stop complaining, Canada: Your traffic is bad, but far from worst

The start of the morning rush-hour on Autoroute 15 southbound into Montreal from Laval, Que., August, 20, 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Mario Beauregard

The next time you’re pounding on your horn while stuck on Autoroute 15 into Montreal or grinding your teeth sitting still on Toronto’s Don Valley Parkway, relish in some commuter schadenfreude. It could be much worse.

Four Canadian cities known for their gridlock woes made a new list of North American and European metropolitan areas with the worst traffic. But, Canada’s bumper-to-bumper commutes pale in comparison to cities south of the border or across the pond.

INRIX Traffic, a U.S.-based company which collects real-time traffic data and creates maps for traffic apps, ranked Milan on its scorecard of cities with the worst congestion.

Montreal – Canada’s worst offender on the list – didn’t even crack the top 10: it came in at number 14.

Also on the list were Toronto at 32, Vancouver at 40 and Calgary way down at number 101 (something to toot your horn about, Calgary).

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That’s much different than rankings released last month that put Vancouver as the worst Canadian city for time spent in traffic—with commuters having an average of 87.5 hours travel delays in a 12-month period, based on a 30-minute commute.

That study, by GPS product maker TomTom, looked at the average combined amount of time commuters are running late for meetings and dinner dates because of slow moving traffic flows.

READ MORE: Vancouver, Toronto top list of worst gridlock cities in Canada

But Canadians can still hold their heads high: Canada came in 6th on INRIX’s list of most congested countries.

INRIX came up with its rankings based on reference speed, the uncongested free flow speed for roadways, and the calculated speed during peak time periods (6:00 to 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.) during the work week of Monday to Friday.

To create the score, INRIX looked at the actual speed of traffic at 15 minute intervals during those peak periods, compared to how much time it would take to navigate the same route free of traffic.

INRIX also looked at how much time overall was wasted in traffic, giving the London commute zone the dubious honour of usurping the most time from drivers—83.4 hours.

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According to INRIX, Montrealers waste 38.1 hours in traffic, Torontonians 38.5 hours, Vancouverites 29.5 hours and Calgarians 16.4 hours.

So while you dig your fingernails into your steering wheel waiting to inch closer to home, contemplate how your commuter compatriots in these cities must feel.

1. Milan, Italy
Score: 33.8
Time wasted in congestion: 57.0 hours (in a 12-month period)

2. Brussels, Belgium
Score: 33.3
Time wasted in congestion: 82.9 hours

3. Antwerp, Belgium
Score: 31.4
Time wasted in congestion: 78.1 hours

4. Honolulu, U.S.A.
Score: 31.3
Time wasted in congestion: 60.8 hours

5. Los Angeles, U.S.A.
Score: 31.2
Time wasted in congestion: 64.3 hours

6. London commute zone, U.K.
Score: 30.1
Time wasted in congestion: 83.4 hours

7. San Francisco, U.S.A.
Score: 26.8
Time wasted in congestion: 56.5 hours

8. Greater Manchester, U.K.
Score: 25.9
Time wasted in congestion: 46.9 hours

9. Paris, France
Score: 24.2
Time wasted in congestion: 54.8 hours

10. Rotterdam, Netherlands
Score: 23.1
Time wasted in congestion: 62.6 hours

14. Montreal, Que.
Score: 21.6
Time wasted in congestion: 38.1 hours

16. New York, U.S.A.
Score: 21.3
Time wasted in congestion: 54.2 hours

32. Toronto, Ont.
Score: 18.1
Time wasted in congestion: 38.5 hours

39. Washington D.C., U.S.A.
Score: 16.3
Time wasted in congestion: 40.5 hours

40. Vancouver, B.C.
Score: 16.1
Time wasted in congestion: 29.5 hours

101. Calgary, Alta.
Score: 9.7
Time wasted in congestion: 16.4 hours

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