The majority of Australian commuters are stressed as a result of their daily trips to and from work, university or school and are willing to embrace technology to change their travel experience, according to recent findings from IBM’s Australian Commuter Pain study.

 

Our dependency on cars is driving a growing number of problems for Australia, including traffic congestion, pollution, higher fuel prices and increased driver stress.


 

The survey found that driving a car alone is the main mode of transportation by which most Australians commute to and from work, university or school (63 per cent).

 

This is more common in Perth (70 per cent), Brisbane (69 per cent) and Adelaide (67 per cent) than in Sydney (62 per cent) and Melbourne (58 per cent). In the last three years, 22 per cent of drivers experienced roadway traffic so bad that they turned around and went home.

 

This response to chronic congestion is highest in Sydney (27 per cent) and Brisbane (25 per cent) and lowest in Adelaide (11 per cent) and Perth (11 per cent).

 

“These findings indicate that the daily commute in Australia’s biggest cities is longer and more painful than ever before. It reflects the reality that our transport infrastructure is not keeping pace with continuing economic growth in this country,” said John Hawkins, Smarter Transportation Industry Expert, IBM Australia.

 

“Building more roads is not enough to solve these issues; introducing smarter technology that can provide real-time information to transportation officials and commuters will help reduce commuter stress and ease traffic congestion.”

 

The IBM study also shows that our reliance on cars for commuting severely impacts the nation’s health and stress levels. 41 per cent of drivers believe that traffic has negatively affected their health, and 39 per cent believe it has negatively affected their performance at work or school/university.

 

Sydney commuters are worst off, with 50 per cent of drivers in that city experiencing negative health effects, whilst the least affected are in Adelaide (28 per cent) and Perth (28 per cent).

 

Among those who believe that traffic has negatively affected their health, increased stress (77 per cent) and anger (52 per cent) are the primary symptoms.