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Vehicle dependency spikes as public transport ‘goes backwards’

Vehicle dependency spikes as public transport ‘goes backwards’

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Drivers’ dependency upon their vehicles has risen by a third over the past year – partly because of deficiencies in public transport, according to new research.

Drivers’ dependency upon their vehicles has risen by a third over the past year.

According to new research, this is partly because of deficiencies in public transport.

Data has revealed that 33 per cent of motorists – equivalent to 13.2m people – are more reliant upon their cars than they were 12 months ago.

The annual Report on Motoring published by the RAC – now in its 30th year – had shown that car dependency had been steadily declining since 2012, when 31 per cent of drivers admitted they were more reliant on their vehicle than they had been the year before.

Read the RAC Report on Motoring 2018 here

But the latest figures show the UK as a nation is now more wedded to the car than ever.

Of those who said that they relied more upon their car in this year’s study, 14 per cent said they were ‘much’ more dependent – an increase of five per cent over 2017’s figure.

The key reasons as to why car dependency has increased include a greater need to transport family members; family and friends having moved further away and a longer commute.

RAC Report on Motoring Public Transport infographic

Interestingly, 24 per cent of respondents blamed the deterioration of public transport for the increasing reliance upon their cars, with 44 per cent of people criticising its reliability. Six in 10 of the 1,808 motorists questioned said that they would be inclined to leave their car at home more often if public transport was better. Yet 75 per cent of respondents said that they would find it ‘very difficult’ to adjust their lifestyle if their car were taken away. Source

David Bizley, chief engineer for the RAC, said: “At a time when there is so much effort being put into tackling air-quality issues and congestion, it is alarming to see that dependency on the car is actually the highest we have ever seen.

“While there is much talk about improving public transport, the reality is very different as buses and trains are not meeting public expectations, and in some cases have actually gone backwards.”

RAC Report on Motoring Dependence Infographic

Source

Interestingly, 24 per cent of respondents blamed the deterioration of public transport for the increasing reliance upon their cars, with 44 per cent of people criticising its reliability.

Six in 10 of the 1,808 motorists questioned said that they would be inclined to leave their car at home more often if public transport was better.

Yet 75 per cent of respondents said that they would find it ‘very difficult’ to adjust their lifestyle if their car were taken away.