Share the wheel for safer roads
Sweden is one of the most gender balanced countries in the world. However, when Swedes travel by car it is almost always the man who drives. This is not a new phenomenon. In fact, 72% of Swedes say they grew up with their father behind the steering wheel.
”It makes me very happy to hear about new initiatives where actors from different parts of society come together to improve road safety, and 'Dela Ratten' is such an initiative.”
Anna Johansson, Minister for Infrastructure, Swedish Government
Why is this important?
Statistics show that on average women cause fewer traffic accidents than men. If both parties in a relationship share more equally the time behind the steering wheel, they become more experienced drivers. On longer drives, they also become less tired. In short, more equal driving patterns contribute to safer roads. And despite the attitude change after Dela Ratten 2016, the behavior is still not where we want it to be. “What we see here is what we call an intention – behavior gap, there is a positive intention, but it is more difficult to motivate a change in behavior. We are creatures of habit and feel safe when we use habits and patterns. To increase the likelihood of the wanted behavior, we need to make a decision. It is crucial to have a plan for when, where and how to swap seats in the car. If we are capable of the anticipated change, anticipate possible difficulties and ways to overcome those, it will be easier to succeed.” Sofia Bunke, Senior Lecturer, Department of Psychology, Lund University.
Breaking old habits has also been proven to contribute to increased well-being and creativity. Research shows that people who regularly make other small changes in their everyday life, like taking different ways to work, become happier and smarter. Sharing the wheel not only increases traffic safety but also personal development. Dela Ratten is a public awareness campaign to increase road safety by promoting changed driving patterns. The campaign is an initiative by Ford in collaboration with progressive business and civil society actors promoting road safety in Sweden. Want to join? Please contact Erik Lindham, Communications Manager at Ford Sweden, firstname.lastname@example.org