A survey found that 87.3% of people in the Klang Valley drive alone to their workplaces in the central business district of Kuala Lumpur
The survey was conducted by the Centre for Governance and Political Studies (Cent-GPS) on people who drive to work from Ampang, Seri Kembangan, Sungai Buloh, and Petaling Jaya.
A total of 4,689 drivers were surveyed during the morning rush hour from 23 October to 25 October, reported New Straits Times.
Cent-GPS attributed the high percentage of single-occupant vehicles in the city to affordable fuel and toll fares
"From our literature review, the biggest correlation we find with high levels of single-driver commuters is the cost of fuel and toll," the survey by the Kuala Lumpur-based firm said.
"The fairly affordable cost of fuel and toll in Malaysia is not a big enough incentive to urge people to seek a carpooling or public transport option.
"If the government were to increase the cost of toll and fuel, the most affected would be the B40 group, making driving to work alone a luxury afforded by the rich."
The study said since it does not cost much to drive, Klang Valley folks prefer it as it gives them the comfort of some 'alone time'
It said that drivers prefer spending the morning driving alone to gather their thoughts, or listen to their favourite podcasts or music, reported Malay Mail.
"Some even complained that the cost of parking at an LRT or MRT station was the same as parking at work," the study said.
"A few others complained that when they do make carpooling arrangements, their colleagues would often wake up late, all the more making the driver late for work as well."
Cent-GPS cautioned the government against abolishing tolls or continuing fuel subsidies
It contended that the move to abolish tolls will be a "back-stepping function" for the nation.
"Tolls need to be seen as a function in a developing country that can begin to regulate and reduce the number of cars on the road," the think tank explained, reported The Star.
"As we head into a decade where climate change will determine our livelihoods, these measures, albeit painful and unpopular, need to be taken for the greater good and for the cleanliness of our children's future."
When compared to other nations, Klang Valley ranked the highest in the world in the single-driver category
The study stated that only 56% of workers in Spain commute alone by driving, while 44% carpooled or use public transport, reported New Straits Times.
A nationwide study in the United States last year found that 66% of drivers were single-driver commuters, while the other 34% practiced carpool.
"In Belgium, the number of single-driver commuters has been declining at a rate of 5% a year. This group is now believed to be only around 30% of road users," Cent-GPS said.
Meanwhile, did you know a total of RM5.51 billion is lost in productivity annually due to traffic jams: