American Motorists On Pace To Break 2007 Miles-Driven Record

Cameron Aubernon
by Cameron Aubernon
american motorists on pace to break 2007 miles driven record

Thanks to low fuel prices, American motorists drove a record 720.1 billion miles during the first quarter of 2015.

The new record, reported by the United States Department of Transportation, moves ahead of the previous milestone in 2006, when 705.7 billion miles were driven over the period, and doubles the Q1 1982 figure of 345.5 billion miles, The Detroit News writes.

In month-to-month figures, Americans drove 3.9 percent more in this March than they had in March 2014, netting 261.7 billion miles for the month since record collections began 79 years ago; March 2015 also marks the 13th consecutive month of an increase in miles driven.

Overall, the United States saw 3.02 trillion miles driven in 2014, the highest amount recorded since 2007. The increases are helped by lower fuel prices, currently standing at a national average of $2.731 as of this writing. At the current rate, Americans will surpass the 2007 peak of 3.03 trillion miles driven.

[Photo credit: Wonderlane/ Flickr/ CC BY 2.0]

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  • Secret Hi5 Secret Hi5 on May 21, 2015

    People found new roads. (TM)

  • SunnyvaleCA SunnyvaleCA on May 21, 2015

    Out here in the Silicon Valley the joke about figuring out where to live is to drive directly away from your work and when you have driven far enough to afford a house, that's where you live. Unfortunately, for many people that is 50+ miles (each way) for a cool 25k commuting miles per year. In addition to the distance, traffic at rush hour (which last for 8 hours every day) can be brutal.

    • Jkross22 Jkross22 on May 21, 2015

      That's what happens when a city has million dollar condos with less than 900 sq feet. The bay area is a nice place to visit, but I don't understand the desire to live there.

  • David C. Holzman David C. Holzman on May 21, 2015

    The total number of miles driven per year is comparable to the distance to Neptune, and to the distance to Pluto when it's at its closest point to the sun. (Pluto varies from roughly 3 billion to roughly 5 billion miles from the sun.)

  • Brn Brn on May 21, 2015

    How do they know? Last I checked, I'm not intentionally providing the DOT with how many miles I drive.

    • See 1 previous
    • Pch101 Pch101 on May 22, 2015

      "Where did the FHWA get the traffic data used in TVT (Traffic Volume Trends)?" The TVT report is based on traffic data from the Highway Performance Monitoring System and on data submitted to the FHWA by State highway agencies throughout the entire U.S. The State highway agencies collect the data through permanent automatic traffic recorders (ATR) on public roadways. There is plenty of data available that make it possible for mileage estimates to be made.