Securing America's Future Energy

SAFE’s Analysis Finds Rise of Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) has Improved Transportation Access for Middle and Lower Income Households

Contact: Bridget Bartol | 202.461.2361 |

Washington, D.C.—Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE), today released its research and analysis of the 2017 National Household Travel Survey (NHTS) extrapolating a number of public benefits from the emergence of TNCs, including increased access, expanded service areas, and higher occupancy rates.

“SAFE’s findings show that the rise of TNCs have had a clear, positive impact in reducing the barriers to transportation for people at all income levels and in many communities. Regulating TNCs have proven to be a difficult, and in some cases controversial, challenge for local governments, but it’s important that policymakers at all levels are well-informed of the benefits these services have provided to their communities and the impact that stalling or rolling back these services could cause to their constituents,” said Amitai Bin-Nun, SAFE’s Vice President of Autonomous Vehicles and Mobility Innovation.

SAFE’s analysis identified the following:

  • TNCs have improved transportation access for middle and lower-income families—there has been a 3-fold increase in ridership in for-hire vehicles since 2009 from those earning between $25,000 and $50,000, reflecting the unmet demand from taxi services;
  • Occupancy rates of TNC trips are 50% higher than taxis and higher than personal vehicles;
  • The same volume of demand can be met with 33% fewer vehicles if driven by TNCs rather than taxis;
  • TNCs increase transportation access outside of city centers, with ridership rates in for-hire vehicles in non-urban households tripling since 2009, and;
  • In total, speed on U.S. roadways has remained unaffected by the surge in TNC use, including across urbanized areas.

Currently 92 percent of the U.S. transportation system is powered by oil. AVs are expected to lower fuel consumption by improving vehicle efficiency through improved traffic flow and optimized routing, in addition to improving fuel choice and undermining oil’s monopoly as a transportation fuel by facilitating a shift towards advanced transportation fuels such as electricity and natural gas.

SAFE continues to work on the state and federal level to advocate for a unified, clear, and modern regulatory framework to enable the safe and expeditious deployment of automated cars and trucks on the nation’s roadways.

# # #

About Securing America’s Future Energy

Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE) is an action-oriented, nonpartisan organization that aims to reduce America’s dependence on oil. Near-total dependence on petroleum in the transportation sector undermines the nation’s economic and national security, and constrains U.S. foreign policy. To combat these threats, SAFE advocates for expanded domestic production of U.S. oil and gas resources, continued improvements in vehicle fuel efficiency, and transportation sector innovations including electric vehicles, natural gas trucks, and autonomous vehicles. In 2006, SAFE joined with General P.X. Kelley (Ret.), 28th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, and Frederick W. Smith, Chairman, President, and CEO of FedEx Corporation, to form the Energy Security Leadership Council (ESLC), a group of business and former military leaders committed to reducing the United States’ dependence on oil. Today, the ESLC is co-chaired by Frederick W. Smith and General James T. Conway (Ret), 34th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps.

1111 19th Street, NW #406, Washington, DC 20036