If you’re looking for a stress-free drive on Seattle interstates, now is the time to jump in your car, activate bioweapon defense mode, and cruise around at your leisure, ‘cause ain’t nobody on the road.
Health officials have suggested people in the Seattle area work from home in order to reduce the chances of transmitting COVID-19. As employers like Amazon and Microsoft tell workers to telecommute, the normally slow-moving highways around Seattle are relatively empty.
“Seattle is literally a ghost town,” Microsoft employee Alina Nadoyan told ABC, “traffic does not exist.”
Amazon had an employee test positive, and a Facebook contractor has been diagnosed with COVID-19 prompting the company to shut down its Seattle offices temporarily. The Seattle area is home to the U.S.’s biggest concentration of coronavirus cases.
Travel times are down around the city and average speeds were up measurably all week, especially increasing towards the end of the week as more companies tell more employees to stay home.
The sudden and significant increase in remote working could help push more companies to adopt it as a normal policy. This could help alleviate traffic and reduce housing prices more broadly. But don’t get too excited; if you can do your job from the suburbs, somebody else can probably do it from much farther away.