Whether rushing home from work or on the way to an important appointment, it can be frustrating to get caught in heavy traffic. Some drivers may become irritated if a slow driver pulls out in front or another vehicle turns in front of them.
Whatever may spark a feeling of anger, it is critical to know what to do if you should come into contact with an aggressive driver. Aggressive driving is involved in at least 56% of deadly car accidents within a five-year period, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Angry drivers are a threat to everyone on the road.
Spotting the signs of an angry driver
Aggressive driving behaviors are not hard to spot. According to the Insurance Information Institute, signs of a motorist with road rage include the following:
- Racing other vehicles or speeding
- Erratically weaving between lanes
- Following too close or tailgating
- Honking and yelling at other vehicles
- Cutting off or blocking other vehicles
- Failing to stop at traffic signals, pedestrian crosswalks or stop signs
Angry motorists may pass vehicles on the shoulder of the road or intentionally hit other vehicles.
Knowing what to do
If you have personally come into contact with an angry driver, your first instinct may be to fight back. However, the best action to take during such a situation is to contact law enforcement. An officer can handle the issue safely and minimize the risk to other motorists.
If you are the one getting angry while driving, try to self soothe and calm down. Try listening to calm music or practice deep breathing techniques. You may even want to pull over and take a break from the traffic or take a different route home.
Managing your anger and handling the situation can help maximize the safety of everyone on the road.