Road rage happens to the best of us, but some people take it to the extreme. If you’ve read up on the statistics, then you know that threats or even violence are a reality when dealing an enraged driver. The situation is a frightening for anyone, but there are ways to protect yourself. Here’s what you need to know.
- Don’t Give In
If someone is making inflammatory gestures or cursing you out, they often want you to do the same in return. This gives them an excuse to escalate the situation to a dangerous outcome. It isn’t uncommon for an enraged driver to ram your car, try to run you off the road, or even pull out a firearm.
Instead of giving in or lowering yourself to their level, rise above it. Calmly ignore them. Don’t honk your horn, flash your lights, or make a single hand gesture. They’ll drive away eventually.
- Open A Passing Lane
If you can, just make room for them to pass you. Aggressive drivers will often ride your tail or make you think they’re going to hit your vehicle. By giving them the room they need to pass you in the next lane, you increase the chances of them simply driving by with smoke pouring out of their ears. If they can’t take the hint, then move over into the next lane yourself and let them speed ahead.
- Find Room to Breathe
Most drivers fill the open spaces ahead of them when driving. Imagine sitting at a stop light, for instance. There’s barely any room from one bumper to the next. Leaving extra space when traffic backs up not only allows others trying to get over to do so, it also gives you some room to escape the overly aggressive.
- Don’t Make Eye Contact
Whatever you do, never look at an enraged driver. People often take this as a challenge or an act of engagement. Just like a toddler throwing a tantrum, one of the best things you can do is ignore the driver in question. Without anything to stoke the flames of their rage, they’ll either calm down or move on. This is the best way to avoid being injured in a car accident by someone else.
- Let It Go
One of the top culprits for inciting road rage is fighting over a parking space. It’s tempting, especially when it was clearly yours and someone stole it. However, the best thing you can do is just let it go. Maybe they really didn’t see you and it was just an honest mistake.
In the event that it wasn’t, do you really think the person who stole your spot is going to listen to reason? Car accident attorneys at the Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal will tell you that answer is always no. They also advise that finding another parking spot hurts less than what an enraged driver might do.