Avoiding Road Rage

Avoiding Road Rage

Road rage is a very dangerous situation that can result in physical attack and in the most extreme situations – even serious bodily harm, possibly death. It’s easy to get mad at rude drivers, but it’s up to you to stop the violence before it even starts.

It should be noted that you will not always be able to diffuse a potentially volatile situation. Some drivers are going to be aggressive no matter what you do. But if you really try to keep yourself in check when confronted with violent driving, you will be making the first step toward stopping that violence.

First and foremost, don’t take aggressive driving personally. In general, the other driver isn't “out to get you.” Some people are just bad drivers or their mistakes are unintentional. They may be tired or just not paying attention. Give them the benefit of the doubt, let go of those bad feelings, and get on with your day.

Remember to breathe and work through your anger with relaxation. The next time you want to inform a fellow commuter of how he or she drives, take a few deep breaths. The process of breathing deeply can help keep you centered and control stress levels.

Don’t offend when behind the wheel. This means obeying traffic laws and taking steps to be sure you don’t cut off another driver, drive slowly in the left lane, tailgate, and/or make rude or offensive gestures. Sure the temptation might be too great to resist, but you’ll be a better and safer driver when you just drive smart and avoid problems.

If you find yourself confronted with an angry fellow driver, don’t engage them. It takes more than one person to make a fight. If you refuse to become angry with another driver, there won’t be any fight.

Steer clear and give that other driver plenty of room. If necessary, pull off the road and let them get a safe distance ahead of you.

Avoid eye contact with them, and by all means, get help if you find yourself threatened. Some states and cellular companies have special phone numbers that you can call if you find yourself in a dangerous situation. Stay calm while behind the wheel. When someone cuts you off by mistake, think of the last time you did the exact same thing to someone else. Nobody is perfect -- including you. So just calm down and try to be civilized. Take two deep breaths, pass him and let him know that he's made a mistake. Such a simple gesture will definitely make the guy that cut you off think twice in the future, including checking all angles and blind spots before changing lanes.

Stay alert while you’re driving. Road rage is often derived from a blatant driving mistake. A simple thing like flicking your signal lights every time you turn or change lanes can help you avoid road rage from flaring.  

Being alert also means keeping your eyes open for other drivers, and staying away from crazy motorists instead of irritating them even more.

Assume that the other drivers on the road are going to make mistakes. When you react calmly and make sure that you are on the lookout for mistakes by other people, you’ll be able to avoid potentially volatile situations and keep yourself out of accidents.

To learn more about road rage, simply click on the links below:

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