The Colossal 50 Lanes Chinese Highway: Debunking The Fake Word of Mouth

The Colossal 50 Lanes Chinese Highway: Debunking The Fake Word of Mouth

You might have seen a picture of an insane Chinese highway that has 50 lanes full of car in a traffic jam, and worst of all, the lanes were merged into merely 4 lanes in the finish line. This occurence happened in 2015, where there’s a week long national holiday in China, resulting into a greatly increasing number of tourist. Apparently, some sources argue that the G4 Beijing–Hong Kong–Macau Expressway was never a 50 lanes highway to begin with, so with this article, we will try to confirm the facts about the jaw-dropping Chinese highway.

Introduction to the Highway

You might have seen a Twitter post where a user compare traffic jam in the United States with the one in China, in which there was one time where commuters were trapped in a traffic jam in a 50 lanes highway, and the fact that it’ll be merged into 4 lanes in the end makes it worse, for once the traffic jams in all countries are nothing but child’s play. This legendary Chinese highway made history in 2015 for being the most jam packed traffic jam. This highway is called G4 Beijing–Hong Kong–Macau Expressway.

There is a small difference between a highway and expressway, highway is a big road meant for public use and connecting two major cities or otherwise important destinations, expressway serve the same purpose but with a little twist. Expressway has limited access or controlled access, high in quality and complete with additional feature such as lane dividers and access ramps. Normally, highway has 4 lanes maximum, but expressway has 4 lanes or more, which in this case, the G4 expressway has 50 lanes.

The infamous 50 lanes Chinese highway traffic jam

Photo is taken from: USA Today
The infamous 50 lanes Chinese highway traffic jam
Photo is taken from: USA Today

So let’s learn more about this specific Chinese highway, The Beijing–Hong Kong–Macau Expressway, which also known as Jinggang’ao Expressway is a 2,272.65 km long road. This road connects Chinese cities of Beijing and Shenzhen, in Guangdong province, at the border with Hong Kong. Particularly in October 6th 2015, this massive Chinese highway has made history by being the most jam-packed traffic human have ever witnessed, imagine being stuck in traffic even after 50 lanes were available.

Speaking of massive infrastructure, you might want to check: How The 2020 Tokyo Olympic Venue Promotes Sustainable Infrastructure for The Better

The G4 Expressway Explained

With 50 lanes in Total, this Chinese highway should be fine handling the excessive amount commuters of Chinese population, but this occurence had proved otherwise, what is happening here is bizarre. Apparently there are factors that explains this occurence, this massive traffic jam happened during the end of one of the busiest tourist events of the year, which is China’s week-long National Day, where millions of tourists use this opportunity to make trips around the country to celebrate the week-full day off.

That might contribute to the clogged roadways of this Chinese highway. Worse part is, as the picture portrays, the 50 lanes highway is being reduced to a smaller number of lanes, it is speculated that it was reduced shortly into 4 lanes. With the excessive amount of commuters, and the 4 lanes finish line, the Golden Week national holiday can be a nightmare in this Chinese highway. However, there is an argument where the statement about the 50 lanes in total is false and the caption from the source you read from was misleading.

Social media post that cause misleading information about the 50 lanes Chinese highway
Social media post that cause misleading information about the 50 lanes Chinese highway

Apparently the statement of this Chinese highway for having 50 lanes in total is not true. The G4 Beijing–Hong Kong–Macau Expressway has only 4 lanes in actuality, but the twist here is that before entering the toll booth exit, the 4 lane road expanded into a way bigger and wider road that can fit approximately 50 columns of cars. The 50 lanes theory was easily debunked by Google Maps aerial view. It was assumed as “50 lanes highway” because the picture in the Twitter post didn’t fully capture the whole road, but just a small portion.

Source: Difference Between Highway and Expressway, By Olivia, July 18th 2011

Does This Image Show a Traffic Jam on China’s 50-Lane Highway?, By Dan Evon, March 28th 2019

1 Comment

Post A Comment