New study finds hybrid drivers drive more and are more dangerous
A recent study by San Francisco-based Quality Planning illustrates a very basic principle of economics. That is, when you decrease the cost of engaging in a specific activity, people will do it more often.
In this case, when increased fuel efficiency lowers the marginal cost of driving, individuals are likely to drive more. This study confirms what many economists have said for years about the hybrid craze – it will have only a limited impact on the consumption or price of gasoline because higher fuel efficiency only leads to more driving.
An interesting finding of this study is that drivers of hybrid vehicles are also nearly twice as likely to get moving violations as the average driver. Collision costs are also about 17 percent higher for drivers of hybrids than average. These are both indications that drivers of hybrid vehicles are generally more reckless than others.
This conclusion is an odd one considering that hybrids are generally smaller and less safe than the average vehicle – which generally would lead to more cautious driving. I guess hybrid owners truly are an exceptional breed!