Zachary Berry
No Comments

AAA Study Finds That American Drivers Are Spending More Time Behind the Wheel Each Year

Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page

According to a new study conducted by AAA, you are in fact spending more time on your daily commute than you used to

Yes, you are in fact spending more time behind the wheel
Photo: Minesweeper

During your daily commute to work, it’s easy to feel like you’re spending more time in your car than you ever used to. According to a new study from AAA, that may actually be true.

The study concluded that Americans spend an additional 20 minutes driving each week than they did back in 2014.

Avoid Commuting Conundrums: Holiday travel tips

The study was part of the larger AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety’s American Driving Survey. Said survey asked 11,804 motorists about their driving habits between Jan. 1, 2014 and Dec. 31, 2017.

Over the course of four years, AAA obtained information about how long and how far motorists drove each day. By the end of the study, AAA concluded that Americans spend a collective 70 billion hours behind the wheel of a car; 8 percent more than they did at the beginning of the study.

Furthermore, drivers traveled an average of approximately 220 miles each week. At the end of the year, American drivers have likely traveled a total of 11,498 miles.

traffic winter
When it comes to spending more time in traffic, you’re in good company
Photo: KGW News

Between 2014 and 2015, drivers spent 48 minutes a day driving. Between 2016 and 2017, that number had grown to 51 minutes a day, resulting in a 6.3 percent increase. Furthermore, the driving population increased from 222.2 million to 225.8 million people during that time.

The study found that men spend an average of 19 percent more time than women do driving. Additionally, married individuals spend 12 percent more time driving than single individuals.

Finally, AAA examined region difference in driving. People who live on the West Coast spend the most time driving, with an average of 58.9 minutes a day. Meanwhile, Midwesterners spend the least time behind the wheel at 44.5 minutes a day.

Health Risks While Driving: Why your driving posture matters

AAA also considered the potential risk factors involved with more time on the road.

“Longer time behind the wheel could lead to issues such as fatigue, distraction, and impatience for drivers, which are all contributing factors for vehicle crashes,” explained Dr. David Yang, executive director for the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. “Drivers need to stay alert and focused on the key task at hand, driving.”

So, the next time you feel that your commute is somehow growing even longer, just remember than your fellow Americans are likely experiencing the same increase in traffic time.

Source: AAA