New Central Statistics Office figures show that Covid-19 restrictions continue to have a significant influence on traffic volumes, public transport and travel through Irish airports.

These all remain at significantly lower levels than the same time in 2019 and early 2020.

Today's CSO figures show that car traffic volumes in regional locations rose by 6.9% in the week from February 14 compared with the previous week.

For the week beginning February 21, car traffic volumes were 3.9% higher than the previous week at regional locations and 4.7% higher in Dublin. 

But the CSO said that car traffic volumes are 48.7% lower in regional locations and 46.1% lower in Dublin when compared with the same week in February last year. 

But HGV traffic volumes have been affected by the changes in latest restrictions. 

For the week from February 21, HGV traffic volumes in regional locations were 2.8% lower in regional locations and 11% lower in Dublin locations when compared with the same week last year.

The CSO noted that the pace of recovery of road traffic volumes for cars and HGVs to pre Covid-19 levels continues to outstrip that of public transport passenger numbers. 

The number of passenger journeys on public transport dropped dramatically since the start of the Covid-19 crisis with journeys by rail most severely affected. 

Despite some recovery in the lead-up to Christmas, the end of the holiday period and the return to Level 5 restrictions has seen public transport volumes fall back to just over a quarter (25.2%) of volumes seen in early March. 

Meanwhile, the CSO also reported a dramatic fall in passengers handled by Irish airports due to Covid-19 travel restrictions. 

The number of passengers travelling through Dublin, Cork, Shannon and Knock airports in January of this year is 91.3% lower than January 2020. 

The total number of passengers handled by those airports in January fell from 2,366,805 to 205,803, a drop of 91.3% when compared with the same time last year. 

It also said the number of passengers travelling through Dublin airport in January was down by 82,196 - a fall of 29.2% on December.

Today's CSO figures also show a fall of 12.4% in the volume of cyclists in Dublin city during off-peak hours in February compared to the same time last year.