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Road Rage … Not Today

Driving can be stressful, that is something we can all agree on!  Feelings of stress and irritation during unfavorable driving situations are very normal.  But a problem occurs when these feelings spiral into road rage or aggressive driving.

Most drivers are able to control feelings of anger and frustration on the road before they turn into aggressive and violent behaviors.  Some of us take deep breaths or put on music.  Others are just simply able to let it go.  The questions then becomes, how do you deal with road rage or aggressive driving from the driver in the car behind you?

According to 2016 statistics from the American Automobile Association's Foundation for Traffic Safety, nearly 80% of polled drivers expressed serious aggression, anger or road rage while driving at least once a year.  At Hupy and Abraham, we know that it can be a terrifying situation when you are sharing the road with an aggressive driver.  Here are some tips on handling aggressive drivers, and protecting you and your family from acts of road rage:

Remain calm. Even if other drivers are acting aggressively, it is important to keep your own behavior calm.  Whenever possible, try to avoid conflict.  If they try to involve you in an argument, pay no attention to it and drive away.

Practice polite driving habits. Avoid tailgating, cutting off other vehicles, speeding, weaving, leaving high beam headlights on and erratic braking.  Merge politely, and always err on the side of being courteous. This is smart to do not just to avoid road rage, but to make driving easier and more pleasant for every motorist.

Slow down and get away from aggressive drivers.  One of the best things you can do is to let aggressive drivers go around you.  If you notice an aggressive driver, create some distance between you and them. 

Avoid making driving a competitive sport.  Driving on the road is not a race, no one needs to win.  Getting worked up over a vehicle that has cut you off or upset you in another way isn't worth it.  Getting home safely is more important than teaching someone a lesson.

Apologize if you have done something wrong.  It happens.  If you have accidentally cut off another driver or made some other mistake that could upset another driver on the road, a simple smile and wave as an apology goes a long way to calm the situation. 

Don't drive under distress and adjust your driving attitude. If you are angry, upset or overtired, avoid driving all together.  Many mistakes are not intentional and not meant to be personally offensive.  Give other drivers the benefit of the doubt, just as you would want them to give you if it were your mistake.  Responding aggressively is not worth the potential of being injured or killed. 

Have reasonable expectations about travel time.  The time pressure of driving and delays that may arise are a huge cause of stress and aggressive driving on the roads.  Allow yourself plenty of time to get where you are going and do not set unreasonable expectations for how fast you'll get there. 

If you’ve been in an accident with someone you suspect was driving aggressively and with negligence, it is important to contact an experienced attorney immediately after an accident to protect your potential recovery.  For more information, contact Hupy and Abraham for a fee consultation at 800-800-5678 or start a live chat 24/7 at Hupy.com.

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