The total number of licensed (taxed) vehicles at 31st December 2006 was 2,296,393, an increase of 157,713 or 7.37% on the 2005 figure.
The huge increase in vehicle numbers in recent years is a clear indication of the economic prosperity of recent times. The 11% increase in goods vehicle suggests a continued increase in economic activity, while the extra private cars indicates greater disposable income. It also reflects the fact that there is a greater number of people at work and therefore a greater need for people to use the private car.
However increased car usage presents its own difficulties, and from the motorists point of view, traffic congestion is the obvious one, particularly around our major urban centres.
Increased car usage has also resulted in a concomitant increase in greenhouse gas emissions, as outlined by the EPA in its recent report.