The National Freeway Bureau yesterday estimated that traffic volume on freeways could hit 2.3 million vehicles during the 228 holiday this weekend.
The head of the bureau’s traffic management division, Kang Jyh-fu (康志福), said the bureau estimated that traffic would be heaviest tomorrow and on Sunday, when the majority of people are likely to travel.
“The four-day holiday [tomorrow through Tuesday] applies mainly to government employees,” Kang said. “Some [people] in the private sector might still have to work on Monday.”
To ease traffic congestion, the bureau has decided to implement toll-free hours on freeways from 12am to 7am, from tomorrow until Tuesday. It will also flexibly activate the ramp meters on all the interchanges of freeways No. 1 and No. 2, as well as several interchanges on freeways No. 3 and No. 5, to regulate the amount of vehicles entering the freeways.
Meanwhile, the bureau said that it would continue to give priority access to large passenger buses on the northbound lanes of Toucheng (頭城), Yilan, Luodong (羅東) and Suao (蘇澳) Interchanges of Freeway No. 5, on which heavy traffic almost always occurs during national holidays.
Both the Taiwan Railway Administration and Taiwan High Speed Rail have increased train services to carry more passengers.
The Central Weather Bureau said a strong cold front is scheduled to arrive during the holiday, with lows in the region of 13oC. There will be a good chance of rain nationwide.
The Directorate General of Highways (DGH) announced that it would regulate traffic at Wuling Farm (武陵農場) during the holiday, as well as the first two weekends of next month. The farm has become a popular tourist attraction in the cherry blossom season.
Drivers experienced very bad traffic during the 228 holiday last year, when some spent seven hours driving from Siyuan Mountain Pass (思源埡口) to Wuling Farm, which are only 16km apart.
The DGH said that residents and tourists traveling in passenger buses will have priority access to Wuling Farm. People in sedans must wait at the 3.5km mark on Freeway No. 7, as the police will allow only 300 cars to enter per hour.