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How To Avoid Aggressive Drivers

June 8th, 2017

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avoiding aggressive drivers

Road rage. We’ve all seen it. Some of us have even been a part of it. But while it may sound like an innocent enough annoyance, road rage and aggressive driving actually lead to thousands of injuries and deaths that could be avoided with the right attitude behind the wheel. Let’s take a look at some common causes for aggression on the road and a few good ways to avoid it.

Causes

As long commutes and busy highways wear drivers down, patience seems to be at an all time low. This list details just a few of the things that can lead to road rage:

·         Dangerous lane changes (cut offs)

·         Driving too slow

·         Driving too fast

·         Talking on the phone/texting

·         Horn honking

·         Tailgating

·         Lack of turn signal use

If you’ve ever accidentally cut someone off and received an angry gesture in return, you already know how frustrating some of these problems can be. And when two drivers both lose patience and get confrontational, the situation can get even worse, sometimes even leading to violence.

Ways to Avoid Road Rage

The best way to avoid road rage is to be vigilant and prevent it from happening in the first place. If you’ve just cut someone off, try to put yourself in the other driver’s situation and imagine how upset you might be. Signaling an apology or sending a wave to other drivers is a good way to defuse a tense situation on the road. Here are a few more tips that can help you stay safe and out of trouble.

·         Look twice before changing lanes – always be aware of where other cars are, and don’t be the person who waits until the last second to make a necessary lane change. Move over well in advance of your turn or exit, and be sure not to cut anyone off.

·         Use the left lane for passing only – the left lane is home to many drivers in a hurry to get somewhere, and if you’re in their way and driving slowly, you’re creating a traffic hazard just as much as they are. Use the left lane to pass when appropriate, but don’t stay there longer than you need to.

·         Always use a turn signal – helping other drivers understand your intentions will go a long way to keeping the peace.

·         Don’t text and drive, and avoid other drivers who do – if you see someone distracted by their phone behind the wheel, the best thing you can do is to avoid that driver. Honking your horn or yelling at the person can only make things worse. Let the police handle traffic offenders, and stay as far away from them as you can.

·         Don’t reciprocate anger – if another driver is yelling at you or making angry gestures, the best thing you can do is avoid eye contact and ignore them. Starting a confrontation won’t help anybody, and it puts yourself and the other drivers around you in more danger.

As attorneys who frequently handle auto accident cases, we’ve seen and heard our fair share of road rage incidents. The last thing we would want is for any of you to end up injured or otherwise involved in a  dangerous situation, so be sure to follow the tips above, and be safe out there!