Criticism as cars, vans and lorries dominate transport statistics

Road use statistics show a ‘countrywide overdependence on cars’ that risks marginalising people who don’t drive, campaigners have said.

The Department for Transport (DfT) has published the Road use statistics: 2016 report, which draws together key results from departmental statistics ‘to provide an overall picture of roads, vehicles and how people use roads’.

According to the DfT, the vast majority (89%) of journeys are made by road and the majority of these are by car or van, while almost three times more goods are moved by roads than by water and rail combined.

The report says this shows that ‘Roads are vital for moving people and goods around the UK’.

But Stephen Joseph, chief executive of Campaign for Better Transport, said: ‘These figures reveal a countrywide overdependence on cars which now means in many areas if you don’t drive, you can’t get around. The Government is spending billions on new roads while cutting support for vital local public transport like buses.

‘This risks marginalising young people, over 65s, those with disabilities and low income households, who we know are most reliant on public transport. We badly need more balanced transport policies which support all sections of society and offer choice in how we get around.’

He added: ‘These statistics reveal that nearly three quarters of all freight is still moved by road. Getting more freight onto rail would help reduce transport emissions and congestion, as well as reducing the huge cost to the taxpayer of repairing the damage caused by lorries to our road network.’

The report includes road traffic statistics, the National Travel Survey, vehicle licensing statistics, and road freight statistics.

It shows that although car use per person has fallen across all different trip purposes since 2002, two thirds of commuting trips are still made by car.

Source: Transport Network 

Photo by Andrew*

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