Commodities and Futures News

US driving hits new record in 2023, topping pre-COVID levels

2024.02.08 10:28


© Reuters. Vehicles are seen departing the Burning Man pageant in Black Rock City, Nevada, U.S., September 4, 2023. REUTERS/Matt Mills McKnight

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -Travel on U.S. roads in 2023 rose 2.1% to three.263 trillion miles setting a new yearly record and topping pre-COVID 19 levels for the primary time, the Transportation Department mentioned Thursday.

Road journey total final 12 months was up 67.5 billion miles and up by 2.2% in December, in accordance with preliminary knowledge. In 2019, U.S. motorists logged 3.261 trillion miles for the 12 months. U.S. driving sharply declined after COVID-19 lockdowns had been imposed in early 2020 as many individuals labored from residence.

The improve in driving comes as extra Americans are returning to workplaces for work as companies and federal companies push employees to return.

Driving was additionally boosted by decrease retail gasoline costs in 2023. U.S. retail gasoline costs final 12 months averaged $0.43 per gallon lower than in 2022, in accordance with the U.S. Energy Department.

The U.S. retail value for regular-grade gasoline averaged $3.52 per gallon in final 12 months on account of decrease costs in 2023 in contrast with 2022.

For 2020, driving fell 11% to 2.9 trillion miles, the bottom yearly complete since 2003, however then rose 8% in 2021 to three.14 trillion miles.

U.S. street deaths rose sharply after the COVID pandemic however have began to say no. Traffic deaths fell 4.5% in the primary 9 months of the 12 months to 30,435.

U.S. visitors deaths jumped 10.5% in 2021 to 42,915, the best quantity killed on American roads in a 12 months since 2005. As U.S. roads turned much less crowded throughout the pandemic, some motorists perceived police as much less more likely to challenge tickets, consultants mentioned, seemingly ensuing in riskier conduct on the roads, in accordance with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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