Even if you are a relatively calm and careful driver, chances are you have moments of frustration behind the wheel. Traffic can be stressful, especially during those morning and evening hours trying to get to and from work. For many drivers, however, the stress of traffic takes over, and they allow their negative emotions to control their driving.
When this escalates, it becomes road rage. Many people have let off steam by shouting or gesturing at another driver. In most cases, the moment passes, and both drivers go on their way without consequence. Road rage, however, may place your life in danger since a raging driver behaves unreasonably and may use his or her vehicle as a weapon with you as the target.
What is road rage?
More than half of all drivers believe it is acceptable to drive 10 mph over the posted speed limit. However, speeding greatly increases the chance of a collision and the chance that you will suffer serious injuries in a crash. Speeding is not always road rage, but many authorities do consider it aggressive or reckless driving. Other forms of road rage include:
- Intentionally cutting someone off without signaling
- Short-braking a driver who is following too close
- Chasing down another driver
- Honking one’s horn
- Flashing high beams in another driver’s eyes
- Trying to run a driver off the road
- Bumping one’s car into another vehicle
It can be a terrifying moment when an enraged driver targets you, or if you just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when two other warring drivers take out their aggressions on each other. Over one third of road rage incidents escalate to the use of a firearm.
Some scary facts
With very few exceptions, most motor vehicle accidents result from driver error. Couple that with an emotional, irrational driver, and you have a recipe for disaster. Road rage is a suspected component in about 66% of all fatal accidents across the country, and Colorado has its fair share of these tragedies.
Too many drivers just going about their business become entangled in the dangerous aggression of other drivers, with tragic consequences. Whether you have suffered injuries in a road rage accident or you have lost a loved one in such an incident, you will likely try to make sense of it for the foreseeable future.