Most people in Connecticut commute to work, but what does that mean in practical terms? How many people drive themselves as opposed to traveling another way? How much time do people spend in transit? How does Connecticut compare to the rest of the country when it comes to commuting?
Census data indicates that some people in Connecticut spend more time commuting on a daily basis than the national average. More commuters drive alone to work than is typical across the country as well.
Time spent commuting
The statewide average commute to work is 26 minutes, which is only slightly less than the national average of 26.4 minutes. However, commute times are longer on average in some Connecticut counties than in others. The longest times are in Fairfield County, where over 15% of commuters spend at least an hour getting to work on a daily basis.
Over a five-year period from 2013 to 2017, the average commute time for the entire state increased from 24.8 minutes to 26 minutes, and the number of people who spent 25 minutes or more getting to work increased as well.
Methods of travel
Despite high-occupancy vehicle lanes and other programs intended to encourage carpooling, more people drive alone to work in Connecticut compared to the average nationally. The latter is 76.4%, while the statewide average is 78.7%.
There are several reasons for this discrepancy. One is that people who work together in Connecticut may not live near each other, and people’s working hours tend to be increasingly irregular. Even people who use the high-occupancy vehicle lanes typically only have two or three people in the car at a time. Additionally, there has been no significant change in the number of cars utilizing those lanes during peak hours either.
Higher traffic volume equates to greater accident risk. Therefore, with more cars spending more time on Connecticut roads during the daily commute, the chances of motor vehicle collisions increases.