Harry Leahey

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Surging costs of fuel has resulted in motorists opting for more environmentally friendly forms of transport, a UK independent road safety charity has found. 

IAM RoadSmart surveyed 1,004 motorists on what changes they have made as a result of rising fuel costs.

Among the respondents, 33 percent of motorists said they have decided to walk more. 

Meanwhile, 17 percent had stated they use public transport more regularly, while seven percent said they have bought a bicycle or used it more frequently.

Those who haven't ditched their cars entirely also said they have started making greener changes to the way they drive, with 38 percent stating that they have tried to drive more economically, while 19 percent disclosing that they have taken extra care to stick to the speed limits.

Neil Greig, Director of Policy and Research at IAM RoadSmart, commented: “The rising cost of fuel is yet another added expenditure for households up and down the country amid the deepening cost of living crisis. 

“However, our research demonstrates that there has been an unexpected ‘green lining’ to the rising cost of fuel, as an increasing number of motorists opt for more environmentally-friendly forms of transport.”

Greig anticipates that the increase in pedestrians on Britain’s already busy shared streets will change the dynamics of our roads. 

“It is crucial to be mindful of the safety of all road users, especially those who will be more vulnerable to injury in the case of a collision.

“Adhering to the ‘hierarchy of road users’ Highway Code rule, which dictates that road users such as cyclists and pedestrians are at greater risk from road traffic, and therefore motorists should possess the greatest responsibility to minimise harm, will play a critical role in helping Britain adapt to these changes.”

On those sticking to their cars, Neil added: “For many, ‘hanging up the keys’ is simply not an option, and the role of owning a car, in terms of personal mobility and keeping Britain moving, cannot be understated. 

“In such cases, we would encourage motorists to follow those who have decided to drive more economically and reduce their speed, which will not only help keep the price at the pumps down, but also keep Britain’s roads as safe as they can be.”

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Harry Leahey 03/01/23