Increased use of public transportation by younger residents of Brisbane and other cities in Australia and New Zealand accounts for this group

Senior Drivers Outnumber 25-34 Year Olds in Australia, New Zealand

The number of motorists in Australia older than 65 has risen by more than 1 million in the past decade, while the percentage of those from 18 to 34 who drive is falling in both countries, Roy Morgan Research reported.

An Australian research firm, Roy Morgan Research, has issued a pair of reports about a development with implications for roadway design and traffic safety there and also in nearby New Zealand: The number of seniors who are driving now exceeds the number of drivers aged 25-34. And in Australia, drivers aged 65 and older are the fastest-growing group on the country's roads.

Ten years ago, 87.5 percent of those aged 25-34 in Australia were driving, but now 82.0 percent of that group's members are, according to the company's report. The reverse is true for seniors: 75.9 percent were driving a decade ago, but 83.3 percent are today.

Roy Morgan Research reports driving is declining fastest among 18-24 year olds in New Zealand – from 76.0 percent a decade ago to 70.4 percent today. While 91.4 percent of seniors are still behind the wheel in the country, 87.6 percent of New Zealanders in their late 20s and early 30s drive.

Public transportation is one of the reasons. "The decline in driving among younger people correlates to an increase in public transport usage. For instance, in the year to August 2003, 25 percent of all 25-34 year-olds traveled by bus within an average three months; in the year to August 2013, this had risen to 30 percent," said Pip Elliott, general manager of Roy Morgan New Zealand. "A marginally lower proportion of Kiwis are driving now compared with 10 years ago. But with the population increasing by around 17 percent over that time, this means there are actually 15 percent more drivers on our roads. The over 65s is the only age group with a proportional increase in people driving; all other age groups saw a decline compared with 10 years ago."

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