Here at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we’re setting out to learn: just how common is aggressive driving and road rage? According to a 2016 study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, nearly 80 percent of participants admitted to experiencing road rage at least once in the prior year. That same study showed that roughly eight million American drivers engaged in extreme road rage activities, such as intentionally hitting another vehicle or getting out of a car to confront another motorist.
It’s easy to see how these behaviors can lead to car accidents and personal injury. Car crashes may result in serious injuries such as concussions, broken bones, or whiplash. If a driver is negligent in causing a car accident, he or she may be liable for any financial damages incurred by an injured victim. Negligent actions might include texting while driving or failing to stop at a traffic light. Compensation may pay for medical bills or help make up for lost wages or future earnings.
If you’re involved in an aggressive driving or road rage accident, you shouldn’t hesitate to Call Paul. Our experienced team of personal injury lawyers is dedicated to helping the victims of a wide range of accidents. We can help you understand your case, assess your needs, and determine whether or not you’re eligible for financial compensation. If so, we’ll fight for your rights in court.
WHAT IS AGGRESSIVE DRIVING?
According to AAA, aggressive driving can be defined as any type of unsafe driving behavior that is performed deliberately with ill intention and a disregard for the safety of other drivers or pedestrians. There are many forms of aggressive driving with the following being the most common types:
- Running red lights or stop signs.
- Cutting off other drivers.
- Weaving in and out of lanes of traffic.
- Blocking other cars from merging or changing lanes.
WHAT IS ROAD RAGE?
While these two terms may seem synonymous, road rage is generally understood as the most intense form of aggressive driving. Road rage is the escalation of aggressive behaviors and may include such actions as making obscene gestures or throwing objects at the other vehicle. Road rage can also include threats to the safety of other drivers, including sideswiping another vehicle, ramming them, or running them off the road.
WHAT CAUSES AGGRESSIVE DRIVING?
There are a variety of causes that lead to aggressive driving behaviors. Poor driving, congested traffic, and general stress were cited as the most common factors leading to aggressive driving and road rage.
In some cases, the perceived offenses of other drivers were relatively minor in nature. A study by AAA found that roughly 90 percent of respondents feel that aggressive driving is a threat to their safety. Additionally, 66 percent found that aggressive driving is a bigger problem today than it was three years ago.
WHO MOST COMMONLY DRIVES AGGRESSIVELY?
According to reports, male drivers are more likely to drive aggressively compared to female drivers. Additionally, drivers between the ages of 19 to 39 have a higher propensity for driving aggressively. Furthermore, men were three times more likely than women to get out of a vehicle to confront a driver or even hit another vehicle on purpose.
HOW TO AVOID AGGRESSIVE DRIVING
It’s the responsibility of every motorist on the road to help prevent and cut down on forms of aggressive driving and road rage. As a driver, you should always remain calm when you’re behind the wheel. Even if another driver acts aggressively or even performs an illegal maneuver, avoid responding aggressively. This, quite simply, is often the recipe for a car accident.
When driving, try to give other vehicles both time and space. We may often feel rushed or stressed when driving, but this anxiety should never be the source of a potential car accident—the little bit of time saved simply isn’t worth it. Avoid tailgating, using your horn excessively, and only use positive hand gestures. You’d be amazed by how quickly courteous driving can reduce aggressive behaviors in other drivers.
If you notice another driver acting aggressively, stay a safe distance from their vehicle. Change lanes if you can do so safely and never reciprocate their aggressive behaviors, like tailgating or speeding, just to get back at them. This type of behavior often leads to car accidents.
CONCLUSION – STUDY FINDS AGGRESSIVE DRIVING TO BE RELATIVELY COMMON
Most drivers in Colorado are shocked to find that aggressive driving is such a common occurrence on our highways and roads. Aggressive driving can lead to car crashes, personal injury, and make the roads a less safe—and enjoyable—place to drive. Do your part to cut down on aggressive driving by practicing safe, courteous driving behaviors. Also, you should avoid responding to aggressive drivers, which often just escalates the situation and can even develop into road rage.
However, if you do find yourself involved in a car accident, don’t hesitate to call the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm for assistance. We can help you understand your case, find the proper medical treatment, work with your insurance company, and determine if you’re eligible for any financial compensation. Contact us at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation to see the options available for you and your case and let us help you on the road to recovery.