Unfortunately, road rage and aggressive driving are exceptionally common today. In a study published by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, more than 80 percent of U.S. drivers expressed significant anger, aggression, or road rage while behind the wheel at least once a year. More alarming, the findings suggest that approximately eight million U.S. drivers engage in extreme examples of road rage, including purposefully ramming another vehicle or exiting the car to confront another driver.
So where do you stand with road rage? Take the AAA quiz now.
- The car in front of you is going way too slowly and is holding up traffic. You… A) Honk and honk, hoping that everyone joins in; or B) You’re annoyed, but wait till it’s clear to overtake, hoping it gets over soon.
- Someone cuts you off on the road, how do you react? A) Flip him your choice of finger; or B) Let him pass, roll your eyes and move on.
- The signal has turned green and there are a few cars in front of you. How long do you wait till you start honking? A) A few seconds. Weren’t they watching the signal? or B) At least 10 seconds. I allow them a few seconds to gear up.
- What does road rage mean to you? A) Road rage is constantly yelling and screaming at other drivers, or B) Aggressive driving.
- When you get home after a drive, how do you feel? A) Agitated. I share my car horror stories with whoever is in earshot, or B) Relaxed and relieved. It’s good to be out of the traffic.
Mostly As: You view driving as a race against time. Not only do you have a considerable amount of road rage, you’re letting the stress of the road infiltrate your daily life by fixating on problems. Understand that reacting aggressively is not going to make them a better driver. Put on some soothing music and learn to ignore the minor annoyances. Mostly Bs: While driving can be taxing, you’re not letting it get to you. Sure, you get annoyed like everyone else, but you know it’s temporary. Not obsessing about going the fastest or catching the signal ensures that not only are you safe on the road, but you’re also protecting your mental health. “It’s completely normal for drivers to experience anger behind the wheel, but we must not let our emotions lead to destructive choices,” said Jake Nelson, AAA’s Director of Traffic Safety Advocacy and Research. “Don’t risk escalating a frustrating situation because you never know what the other driver might do. Maintain a cool head and focus on reaching your destination safely.”
AAA offers these tips to help prevent road rage:
- Don’t offend: Never cause another driver to change speed or direction. Don’t force another driver to brake or turn the steering wheel in response to something you do.
- Be patient: The other driver may just be having a really bad day. Assume that it’s not personal.
- Don’t react: Avoid eye contact, don’t make gestures, maintain space around your vehicle and contact 9-1-1 if needed.
Florida law identifies road rage as “aggressive driving.” Anyone who believes he or she is a victim of road rage should not retaliate on his or her own in any way. Instead, call law enforcement first. Then, call a competent lawyer. Florida law limits the time in which to file a lawsuit, so do not delay. Request a free consultation to learn more about how we can help you if you have been injured in a Treasure Coast road rage accident. Contact Hoskins, Turco, Lloyd & Lloyd online or call us today at 866-460-1990. Led by Board Certified Civil Trial lawyer Steve Hoskins, our firm has decades of experience representing clients whose lives have been changed due to car accidents and personal injuries throughout the Treasure Coast.