The cause of the traffic jam is not an accident, nor is it an unexpected alien landing on the expressway. Authorities blame the whole mess on the precarious infrastructure. Nobody really knows how it all started, but since nine days ago, cars have been slowing down until almost coming to a stop.
The National Expressway 110 (G110) on which all takes place is open to trucks with a carrying capacity of eight tons and above. The increasing traffic in recent months caused the pavement to give way from place to place, causing potholes which need repairing. The potholes, the repair works and the oncoming traffic have caused this monstrous jam.
"Insufficient traffic capacity on the National Expressway 110 caused by maintenance construction since August 19 is the major cause of the congestion," a publicity officer with the Beijing Traffic Management Bureau was quoted as saying by the Global Times.
Authorities, who apparently have no intention of completely closing the expressway until the repairs are over, estimate that the traffic jam will last for about one month in total. According to globaltimes.cn, the jam is a gift from heaven for nearby residents, who reportedly are charging extra for the food purchased by the unlucky drivers.
For the record, the longest traffic jam in history stretched 109 miles between Lyon and Paris in 1980. The Chinese one here is, however, one of the longest lasting ones ever reported.