Drivers sat in one of the worst traffic jams in Moscow's history on Thursday evening as a parade rehearsal for Victory Day combined with heavy rainfall paralyzed the city.
The widely used Yadex.Probki index reached a full 10 points.
The situation was particularly difficult for drivers in central Moscow. The speed of traffic within the Garden Ring Road did not exceed 10 kilometers per hour for hours, traffic police said.
The rain, which started in the late morning and lasted all day, was blamed as the main cause for the traffic jams, while an evening rehearsal for the Red Square parade worsened the problem.
To move columns of military equipment, Moscow traffic police blocked Tverskaya Ulitsa, Novy Arbat, a stretch of the Garden Ring, and a dozen major highways.
"The week before the May holidays is traditionally celebrated by increased traffic," Yandex.Probki analyst Leonid Mednikov told Izvestia. "Now there is rain in Moscow. Moreover, the situation is complicated by the fact that the streets were blocked in the capital from 6 p.m. because of the May 9 parade rehearsal."
There will be two more night rehearsals — with street closures — before the parade on April 29 and May 3. A daytime dress rehearsal will be held on Red Square on May 7, Interfax said.
No rain was forecast for Friday, but heavy rainfall was expected to return Saturday and Sunday.