Young drivers living in rural areas are 37% more likely to be involved in an injury collision than their urban counterparts, according to a new report published today (10 February) by Road Safety Analysis.
The report, ‘Young Drivers Road Risk and Rurality’, also reveals that young rural drivers are two-thirds more likely to be involved in an injury collision than older rural drivers.
The report was compiled by Road Safety Analysis in partnership with the BBC, and the results will feature in the Countryfile programme on Sunday 12 February.
One of the biggest factors in the increased risk is the higher mileage driven by rural drivers – on average they cover 31% more miles than than those living in urban areas. This increased exposure, combined with their relative inexperience compared to older drivers, means that rural councils and police forces should pay special attention to this issue, says Road Safety Analysis.
The report also considers deprivation and whether this is a factor in young driver crashes. While this was not found to be the case in rural areas, it is a factor in large towns and cities.
Dan Campsall, director of Road Safety Analysis says: “This is the first time that we have had a thorough examination of the risks to young drivers based on where they live – and the results are stark.
“Younger drivers from rural areas are much more likely to be involved in a crash where someone is injured, and we need to see a package of measures developed that can bring about a change. This may require investment in transport infrastructure, community bus schemes and further driver training to affect the inequality that these drivers are experiencing.”