Car Accidents caused by Road Rage
Sitting for long periods of time in Chicago area rush-hour traffic can lead to very short tempers. Road rage is known to lead to car accidents on highways, and drivers that cause these accidents are responsible for their actions and the resulting injuries to other parties.
Anger and frustration sometimes leads impatient drivers to tailgate, failed to obey traffic signals, change lanes abruptly without signaling, speed uncontrollably, or cut off other drivers.
Staying Safe When Others Have Road Rage
Road rage is increasing issue on Illinois roads and learning how to avoid incidents is a good idea. First, control your own behavior and don’t be an instigator. You cannot control the behavior of other motorists on the roadway, but you can control your behavior and reactions.
If someone is tailgating you or someone cuts you off, staying cool you can avoid a possible road rage incident.
If someone starts to exhibit road rage behavior towards you, it is better just to get out of the way, ignore any offensive gestures or speech, and don’t make eye contact. If the other driver starts to chase after you, call the police and try to get to a populated area and pullover, and stay in your vehicle.
Your Driving Behavior can Lead to Road Rage in Others
If you are the one driving aggressively, for example, you make cause others to have road rage. If you tailgate someone that is driving slowly, or if you use your horn excessively, or flash your headlights, etc—it is likely that you could anger another motorist who has a volatile temper. Of course it is not your fault if other are aggressively driving when you are doing something normal, like honking at a driver at a green light, but keep in mind that people can be unpredictable. Drive accordingly and try to stay safe.
Aggression Causes Aggression: Road Rage Statistics
One study found that approximately 50% of motorists react to aggression with their own aggression. Of the drivers that react, 34% use their horn, 27% respond verbally, 19% give an obscene gesture, 17% flash headlights, 7% respond by driving aggressively, and 2% of drivers will try to run you off the road. These behaviors could potentially lead to serious accidents and serious injuries.
The study also found that men are around 8% more likely to respond aggressively than women. Further, younger drivers ages 18 to 24 are twice as likely to be aggressive when compared with drivers above the age of 65. Cell phone users are more likely to react aggressively. Surprisingly, motorists with children in the vehicle respond more aggressively.
Another study indicates that young male drivers under the age of 19 are most likely to demonstrate road rage behaviors. There is no consensus as to why this statistic is true, some experts say that teen drivers are less mature with short tempers, while other experts have different theories.
One AAA Foundation Report found that individuals are more likely to commit road rage when they are going through a rough time in their personal life. For example, they going through a divorce, suffering from injuries or illness, a job loss, etc. The study also found that motorists with criminal or violent histories and those who have drug and alcohol problems are more likely to commit acts of road rage.
On the other end of the spectrum, are you a driver who angers people by getting in the way? Are you driving 10 mph under the speed limit, accelerating very slowly out of stop signs and traffic signals, and generally just slowing everyone down? This is another type of driving that is likely to anger other motorists in your area.
The Difference between Aggressive Driving and Road Rage
The principal difference is that aggressive driving is a traffic offense while road rage is considered criminal behavior. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration defines road rage as an assault with a motor vehicle, willful and wanton behavior that disregards the safety of others.
Here are some more suggestions on how to avoid causing road rage incidents:
- Give yourself plenty of time when making a trip, don’t rush;
- Avoid driving when you are overtired or angry;
- Try to relax when you are stuck in traffic; and
- Plan driving trips at times where you should avoid the worst traffic
Auto Accidents caused by Road Rage
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident that was caused by a road raging driver, call the offices of Abels & Annes for a free consultation.
Road rage collisions can result in serious back and neck injuries, broken bones, head trauma, and sometimes death. Motorists that injure others are responsible for their actions, including paying for medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and more.
You might have a valid claim for your damages if you have been hurt in a road rage crash while in Chicago or elsewhere in Illinois. The legal team at Abels & Annes, P.C. are standing by 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to take your call toll free at (855) LAW-CHICAGO (529-2442) or locally at (312) 924-7575.
Unlike at some other firms, we keep a licensed lawyer standing by to take your call and provide you with a free case consultation. There is no obligation on your part for speaking with us and there is never a fee associated with the first call.
Everything discussed in the case consultation will be kept confidential and if we represent you for your accident, we will never charge a fee unless we make a recovery on your behalf. If you prefer to meet with us in person but you are too injured to travel to our offices, we also offer free in-home and in-hospital consultations so that you can get the answers you deserve, whenever you need them.