It turns out that public transportation does more than just lower our impact on the environment — it also has incredible benefits for our health and safety. A new study released by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) shows that people that live in communities with extensive public transportation networks exercise more, live longer, and are generally healthier than people in automobile-dependent communities.
“Use of public transit simply means that you walk more which increases fitness levels and leads to healthier citizens. More importantly, increasing use of public transit may be the most effective traffic safety counter measure a community can employ,” noted APTA president William Millar. Apparently communities with vast public transportation networks don’t just live longer because of the exercise — they’re also less likely to be the victim of a fatal auto accident. The traffic fatality rate in the Bronx, New York is four in 100,000 contrasted by the traffic fatality rate in auto ridden Miami, Kansas which is 40 in 100,000.
Todd Litman of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute aggregated information for the report, and his conclusion is that we should put more of our money into increasing our public transportation networks. The health and safety benefits of having a great public transportation network can’t be overemphasized, and according to Litman, “A growing portion of households want to rely more on alternative modes and live in more accessible, multi-modal communities.” “Accommodating this demand would provide benefits to users and society, including significant health benefits.” Hooray for the subway!
Via Autoblog Green