Brake has today (23 November) launched a new campaign which calls on people to drive less, on the back of a survey in which 75% of drivers said that people in the UK use their cars too much.
The ‘Drive less, live more’ campaign, launched to coincide with the beginning of Road Safety Week 2015, aims to make roads safer, especially for pedestrians and cyclists, make communities more pleasant, protect the environment and improve public health.
As part of the campaign, Brake and partners AIG and Specsavers have published statistics which they say confirms the “devastating effects on health and wellbeing of driving”.
The stats, taken from a survey of 1,000 drivers, reveal that 79% of those surveyed admit to driving on journeys that could be made on foot, bicycle or by public transport – while 85% believe people should reduce car use.
A significant number of respondents (31%) agreed that driving was detrimental to their own/family’s health, and their family’s finances (28%).
Brake also points to data which shows that air pollution is estimated to kill 52,500 people in the UK each year while nearly a third (27%) of UK CO2 emissions come from road transport.
It also says that five deaths and 64 serious injuries happen daily on UK roads and that one in three non-cyclists (35%) would cycle their commute if routes were safer.
The charity also says that 43% of adults in England don’t do the recommended amount of moderate physical exercise, pointing to stats which show that one in four adults in England are obese and a further 37% are overweight.
Gary Rae, director of communications and campaigns at Brake, said: “Our Road Safety Week theme of ‘drive less, live more’ makes clear the link between improving road safety, preventing casualties, protecting people and the planet, and our choice of transport.
“We understand that not everyone has freedom of choice in the way they travel, hence we continue to have a strong year-round focus campaigning for a safer environment for walking and cycling through our GO 20 campaign. We also support the efforts of partner organisations that are campaigning for better public transport.
“But our main aim through this November’s Road Safety Week is to help people consider the options open to them, and better understand the benefits of driving less, to road safety, health, personal finances, communities and the planet.”