Road Rage and Aggressive Driving
Human error causes most crashes and personal injury on American roads. But there are unfortunate times when unhappy circumstances are created by more than mere error. One such cause is when drivers intentionally act aggressively when operating their vehicles. This can come in many forms and for many reasons, but the results are often the same: damage to another innocent person on the road.
If this happens to you or a loved one, it is critical to contact a Georgia car accident attorney as soon as feasible to protect your legal rights.Combating Aggressive Driving
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the federal agency charged with securing the safest roadways possible, defines aggressive driving as "when an individual commits a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property." The federal government has put together materials aimed at reducing this source of danger on American roads.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, there are several behaviors that drivers can put into play when confronted with aggressive drivers to decrease risk of injury and avoid exacerbating an already dangerous situation.
First, an alert and defensive driver needs to be able to identify indicators of an aggressive threat on the road. Look for these signs:
- Is the other driver tailgating? Following too close to allow for proper stopping distance is a chief cause of crashes. This demonstrates disregard for possible consequences in exchange for getting a few feet ahead on the road.
- Is the other driver changing lanes over and over? Sacrificing the safety of others sharing the road by crossing lanes repeatedly to gain an advantage is a big warning sign.
- Is the other driver observing traffic lights? Running through yellow lights (or worse red lights) rather than slowing cautiously is another indicator of aggressiveness.
- Is the other driver speeding? Travelling above the lawful speed limit, or otherwise driving too fast under the present road conditions puts everyone on the road at risk.
- Is the other driver being inattentive? Are they texting, or otherwise dividing their attention? This is further evidence of disregard for other drivers.
- Most importantly, does the other driver appear to be taking their frustration out on other nearby drivers? This is a guaranteed path to collision, and people who drive angry need to be treated as a hazard by a responsible and defensive driver.
- Take every safety opportunity to get away from them and let them pass by.
- Don't challenge them. Don't speed up or try to cut an aggressive driver off. It isn't worth your trouble.
- Eye contact is a bad idea. Avoid it, and you will avoid appearing to confront an irrational person and provoking them.
- Don't fall to their level. Even if they are insulting you or gesturing rudely, rise above the fray.
If road rage is bad enough: report it. Have a passenger make a call to the police, or pull over and find a safe spot to make the call to authorities yourself. Remember, it is better to be late than not to arrive at all. Remain relaxed behind the wheel. Road rage and aggressive driving is not a worthwhile use of your energy.
If a driver was injured you or damaged your property by driving aggressively, then it is important to demand accountability. Contact the Persons Firm online or give us a call at 770 424 5125 immediately for a free consultation.