Road Rage


Road rage-or aggressive driving-can come in the form of tailgating, abrupt lane changes, and speeding. It can occur when an angry or impatient motorist or passenger intentionally uses their vehicle in a physical assault of another driver during a traffic dispute.

Examples of Aggressive Driving

  • Abrupt, unsignaled changes of lanes.
  • Driving in the left lane excessively at the posted speed limit, blocking the passing lane.
  • Exceeding the speed limit by more than 10 mph.
  • Failure to use turn signals when turning.
  • Flashing light to signal a desire to pass.
  • Honking at other drivers blocking or slowing traffic.
  • Making a right turn on red without stopping.
  • Making hand or finger gestures at other drivers.
  • Running a red light or stop sign.
  • Tailgating excessively.
  • Unnecessary use of high beam headlights.

When and Where Does It Occur?

  • Road rage happens most often in moderately congested traffic, perhaps because heavily congested traffic conditions lower driver’s expectations.
  • Road rage incidents occur most often during the summer months.
  • Road rage is most likely to occur on a Friday afternoon. It is during the afternoon peak traffic hours that drivers are most apt to be both fatigued and rushed.
  • Urban areas are the most frequently reported location for road rage incidents.

Avoiding Road Rage

  • Avoid cutting other drivers off in traffic.
  • Avoid making any gestures or eye contact with another driver.
  • Be courteous in the use of high-beam headlights.
  • Don’t block intersections.
  • Don’t flash your lights or blow your horn as a signal to pass another vehicle.
  • Don’t tailgate, Allow at least two-second space between your vehicle and the one ahead of you.
  • Drive in the right of middle lane; pass on the left.
  • Forget winning and allow yourself enough time for your trip.
  • If someone follows you after an on-the-road encounter, drive to a public place or to the nearest police station.
  • Obey speed limits.
  • Put yourself in the other driver’s shoes. Don’t take other driver’s actions personally.
  • Report any aggressive driving incidents to the police immediately.
  • Respect pedestrian right-of-way in crosswalks.
  • Signal several hundred feet before you change lanes or make a turn.
  • Stop at stop signs and red lights; don’t run yellow lights.