November 20, 2017 / 1:54 PM / a year ago

Motorists log more miles on U.S. roads in September versus a year ago: Department of Transportation

Traffic flows along Coast Highway 101 through San Diego's North County beach town of Encinitas, California March 31, 2014. Picture taken March 31, 2014. REUTERS/Mike Blake

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Motorists logged 0.3 percent more miles on U.S. roads and highways in September than a year earlier according to data released Monday by the U.S. Department of Transportation, as volumes were dented by powerful Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

Volumes, however, remained on track to outpace last year’s record high.

Motorists logged 262.5 billion vehicle miles in September, up 0.8 billion vehicle miles over September 2016, DOT figures show.

Cumulative travel for 2017 increased by 1.3 percent, or 31.4 billion vehicle miles. The cumulative estimate for the year is 2,410.3 billion vehicle miles of travel, DOT said.

Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, which struck different parts of the country in quick succession, squeezed fuel supplies and cut into crucial travel in September.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, drivers logged 0.9 percent more miles in September to 267.4 billion vehicle miles than a year earlier, DOT said.

Reporting by Scott DiSavino and Devika Kumar in New York; Editing by Bernadette Baum and Jonathan Oatis

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