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Title: Attitudes towards the stress created by ever increasing traffic in the Maltese Islands
Authors: Catania, Gottfried
Azzopardi, Andrew
Keywords: Traffic congestion -- Malta
Stress (Psychology)
Well-being -- Malta
Quality of life -- Malta
Issue Date: 2024
Publisher: Global Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences
Citation: Catania, G., & Azzopardi, A. (2024). Attitudes towards the stress created by ever increasing traffic in the Maltese Islands. Global Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences, 3(3), 29-37.
Abstract: The relatively large and rapid increase in population in the Maltese Islands over the past decade has placed significant strain on the infrastructure of the country. These factors, together with the fact that issues with the public transport system have never been completely sorted, has led to an over-reliance on private cars as the main means of transport in most cases. Increased transport has been shown to increase stress and aggressive behaviour in drivers, amongst other possible negative consequences, leading to a negative effect on personal wellbeing. In order to assess the perceptions of the Maltese about the stress created by traffic, a cross-sectional study was conducted by means of telephone interviews with a stratified sample of 400 Maltese participants. A purposely designed questionnaire with twelve items scored on a seven-point Likert scale was used for this purpose. While more than four fifths of participants stated that they owned at least one car, and most agreed that traffic increases stress, both in the short and long term, less than one third of participants strongly agreed to preferring to use public transport rather than their private vehicle, even if public transport were more reliable. Females showed more anxiety than males with reference to the traffic situation and 18–29-year-olds showed the lowest level of agreement overall with the statements in the survey – a surprising result given this age group’s awareness of the negative effects of climate change on wellbeing.
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