Motorists caught up in football fever and traffic

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As the Netherlands gears up for its crucial quarter-final World Cup match against Brazil this afternoon at 4 pm, Dutch motoring association ANWB has warned against reckless driving in the early evening rush-hour.

The ANWB reported that there were up to 100 kilometres of traffic jams on the motorways around lunchtime. A spokeswoman for the association said a significantly high number of accidents had taken place. Alongside the football frenzy - it's estimated that some ten million will watch the match - temperatures have soared to above 30 degrees in some parts of the country. Warnings have been issued against dehydration whilst driving, particularly if caught up in a traffic jam. The ANWB says congestion will be worst at about three o'clock, but expects the roads to be quiet at normal rush-hour times. Many holiday-goers also added to today's traffic chaos.

And it seems that traffic bedlam on Dutch roads won't just be a World Cup memory. Outgoing Traffic Minister Camiel Eurlings has warned that heavy congestion is likely to continue until 2020. According to a report commissioned by the minister on the capacity of the current transport network and presented to parliament yesterday, traffic will increase substantially on the roads around the capital Amsterdam and the southern cities of Breda, Den Bosch and Eindhoven. Traffic flows within the triangular zone of Rotterdam, Gouda and The Hague will also slow down.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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