Changes in Summer Driving Habits

The US Department of Transportation released a report yesterday on the continuing decline in the number of miles the average American drives. Among the statistics, “Americans drove 4.7 percent less, or 12.2 billion miles fewer, in June 2008 than June 2007″, and used nearly 400 million fewer gallons of gasoline in the first quarter of 2008 compared to the same period in 2007. In the detailed statistics, you can see that the number of miles driven on rural roads in Alaska dropped by 6.5% in June 2008 from the previous year (the drop on urban roads was 4.4%).

I’ve been unable to find stats on mileages driven in Canada. I wonder how many people here are driving less, and how many are buying more fuel-efficient vehicles so they can drive as many miles as they used to without an increase in fuel consumption? Buying smaller vehicles certainly doesn’t seem to be the case in the Yukon or Alaska, where huge vehicles still make up a large percentage of the vehicles on the road. Seeing full-size pickups and SUVs coming at you on the Alaska Highway is certainly a deterrent to buying a small vehicle!

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