Americans driving less

Gas prices spiked last year and motorists drove 112 billion fewer miles, according to a federal report.

EMAIL  |   PRINT  |   SHARE  |   RSS
 
google my aol my msn my yahoo! netvibes
Paste this link into your favorite RSS desktop reader
See all CNNMoney.com RSS FEEDS (close)
By Lara Moscrip, CNNMoney.com contributing writer

Do you expect to change jobs soon?
  • Yes, I'm worried about layoffs.
  • Yes, I'm hoping to move up.
  • No, fingers crossed. I'm happy where I am.
  • Not sure.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- As gas prices spiked last year, American motorists responded by driving less.

Motorists drove 112 billion fewer miles during the 13-month period between November 1, 2007 and November 30, 2008 compared with the year-prior period, the U.S. Department of Transportation said Thursday.

The average price of a gallon of gas on Nov. 1, 2008, was $2.46, compared to $2.91 a year prior, according to AAA. In the interim, gas prices skyrocketed to record highs, reaching $4.11 a gallon in mid-July.

Driving volume posted its steepest monthly drop in November since 1971, the DOT reported. Americans drove 5.3% less, or 12.9 billion fewer miles, compared with November 2007.

The steepest drop off in driving was reported in the South Atlantic region, with 6.4% fewer miles traveled in November 2008 compared to the same time a year prior.

Among states, the biggest drop off in driving was recorded in Rhode Island, where motorists drove 11.6% fewer miles in November 2008 over the same month a year earlier.

Overall, the decline in driving in steeper among rural motorists than urban drivers.

Average gasoline prices rose for the ninth day in a row Thursday, to $1.85 a gallon from $1.84 the day before, according to AAA.

Gas prices have increased by 23.3 cents, or 12.5%, since the start of 2009. But a gallon of gas is down 38.5% since it reached $3.01 a gallon a year ago.  To top of page

Features
They're hiring!These Fortune 100 employers have at least 350 openings each. What are they looking for in a new hire? More
If the Fortune 500 were a country...It would be the world's second-biggest economy. See how big companies' sales stack up against GDP over the past decade. More
Sponsored By:
More Galleries
10 big dot-com flops Remember Pets.com? The Nasdaq is roaring back towards its all-time high. Here are some of the biggest dot-com busts from the last time the Nasdaq topped 5,000. More
The hottest gadgets at Mobile World Congress 2015 Take a look at the devices creating a stir at the world's biggest mobile tech show. More
Star Trek technology that we use today With the death of Leonard Nimoy, the actor who played Star Trek's Spock, we remember his character's legacy: The technology we use every day. More
Sponsors