Women were also 12% more likely than men to think that the roads have become more dangerous to travel on. They were also on average 4% less likely than men to respond that the roads posed no threat and were not dangerous at all.
So what potentially is influencing the public’s perception that roads are actually getting more dangerous?
There is a common perception that people are becoming more pessimistic than they were before and this misconception about the safety of our roads could be just one case of this.
Worldwide, trends in overall lifestyle and health are in better shape than at any other point in human history, child mortality is lower, education and literacy rates are higher than ever before and less extreme poverty4. But still people all over the world are under the impression that the world is in the worst state it has ever been in.
There is the popular theory that the media are to blame, that they put too much emphasis on the negative aspects and details of modern life without highlighting the good5. ‘Bad news sells’ and ‘if it bleeds it leads’ can seem to be the mottos of every newspaper, news program and article that appears on social media. Whereas positive developments and improvements are often gradual and slow to happen. With the media’s focus on single events, the good news can often be overlooked.
But the important takeaway is the fact that our roads are in fact safer than they were a decade ago thanks to the implementation of more comprehensive road safety plans being carried out across the nation. And with the steadily decreasing trend of fatalities averaging a 2% reduction each year6, there are strong indications that this decrease in fatalities will continue.