In the afternoon of the fourth Wednesday of November, for example, roads near major American airports and big thoroughfares are likely to be packed with people trying to get to their families for Thanksgiving.
But downtown streets might be deserted as everyone takes off early.
In the following months, though, snow wreaked havoc on the city whenever it fell.
In three separate instances, drivers of snow-clearing vehicles were shot at when they collided with other vehicles; one of the drivers, shot by an off-duty police officer, died.
That night, a popular anti-Kremlin blogger, making his way along the river in the center of town, encountered an ambulance driver standing outside his vehicle throwing snowballs lazily off the embankment; he’d been in traffic so long, he explained, that his patient was now dead.
Mayor Yuri Luzhkov, who takes everything that happens in the city very personally, perhaps because over the years he and his wife have come personally to own a good chunk of the city, reacted decisively: he blamed the meteorologists. If they didn’t start forecasting better, there would be trouble.Even without snow, the movement of cars through the circular maze of Moscow was incredibly frustrating.During rush hour on an overcast, slippery day in late February, the luxury Mercedes of a vice-president of Lukoil, the country’s largest oil company, collided at high speed with a small Citroën.terrible traffic has been infamous for a while now, but in the past year it has come to feel like an existential threat.The first snowfall of last winter, in early December, paralyzed the city.On most days, on most stretches of the road in the world, there are actually no tail-backs.Instead, congestion hits in targeted spurts at very particular times of the day, week or year in very particular stretches of road going in a certain direction.“They could then decide that, hey, maybe it makes more sense to wait 15 minutes before leaving so the traffic will clear or to jump in the car now to beat the expected jam.” And after two years, they managed to crack that code.If you want to meet us and learn more about how we approach traffic, you can learn more about predictive traffic at Mondial, check out the HERE booth at the Paris Motor Show at Pavilion 3, Booth 240.“There are dozens of different variables from weather to holidays to events that can affect how traffic is moving on a given stretch of road.You have to take them all into account if you want to properly analyze and understand how traffic is moving.” What feels like common sense about traffic - that a road is packed on the weekdays but empty on the weekends, is often far more complex.