Despite the bad weather and traffic, it’s best to try to relax behind the wheel.
AAA officials said a new study found nearly 80 percent of drivers expressed significant anger, aggression, or road rage behind the wheel at least once in the previous year.
Estimates by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety showed drivers engaged in the following angry and aggressive behaviors:
- Purposefully tailgating: 51 percent (104 million drivers)
- Yelling at another driver: 47 percent (95 million drivers)
- Honking to show annoyance or anger: 45 percent (91 million drivers)
- Making angry gestures: 33 percent (67 million drivers)
- Trying to block another vehicle from changing lanes: 24 percent (49 million drivers)
- Cutting off another vehicle on purpose: 12 percent (24 million drivers)
- Getting out of the vehicle to confront another driver: 4 percent (8 million drivers)
- Bumping or ramming another vehicle on purpose: 3 percent (6 million drivers)
AAA said it’s best to follow these rules of the road:
- Maintain adequate following distance.
- Use turn signals.
- Allow others to merge.
- Use your high beams responsibly.
- Tap your horn if you must (but no long blasts with accompanying hand gestures).
- Be considerate in parking lots. Park in one spot, not across multiple spaces. Be careful not to hit cars next to you with your door.
And they also released these tips for dealing with confrontation and aggressive drivers:
- Avoid eye contact with angry drivers.
- Don’t respond to aggression with aggression.
- If you feel you are at risk, drive to a public place such as a police station, hospital, or fire station.
- When you park, allow room so you can pull out safely if someone approaches you aggressively.
- Use your horn to attract attention but remain in your locked vehicle.
- If you are confronted, stay as calm and courteous as possible.
- If you feel threatened, call 911.