If you have felt angry while behind the wheel, you are certainly not alone. A surprising 80% of American motorists admit that they have felt enraged while driving at least once within the past year.
The aggressive behaviors that accompany enraged driving endanger the lives of other motorists on the road. Reckless driving was involved in 56% of car accident fatalities over a five-year period, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Whether stuck in traffic on the way to an important meeting or rushing home from work, certain situations can enrage drivers and have dangerous outcomes.
What are the signs of road rage?
Aggressive driving can take on many forms. Some of the most common signs of road rage include the following:
- Frequent lane changing, often cutting off other vehicles
- Excessive honking or yelling obscenities at other drivers
- Speeding or racing beside other motorists
- Riding directly behind another driver, or tailgating
- Failing to use a turn signal or adhere to traffic signs or pedestrian crosswalks
- Threatening violence to other motorists
Angry drivers can become so out of hand that they intentionally hit other vehicles. They may even use weapons to threaten other motorists.
What should you do?
Confronting enraged motorists can be extremely dangerous. It is important to avoid eye contact with a driver who is causing a problem. Rather than retaliate, you should contract law enforcement. Officers can handle the issue in a safe manner that will minimize the risk of a catastrophic car accident.
If you should start feeling angry while driving, pull over. Calm down by taking a few deep breaths or listening to soft music. Keep in mind that your aggressive driving puts others’ lives in danger. It is best to arrive at your destination safely rather than cause a serious collision.