With the summer weather here to stay, there is no doubt that drivers tend to be a little more testy and prone to road rage. This time of year it’s not uncommon for driver to have a shorter tolerance and temper when driving. Things like getting cut off, someone swooping in and stealing your parking spot, slow drivers, and many other actions on the road tend to be triggers for many drivers.
However, many victims of road rage have a tendency to respond with road rage themselves, making the situation worse. This could lead to a potentially combustible situation – a situation that needs to be avoided for the good of all drivers.
Two-thirds of traffic fatalities are caused by aggressive driving and road rage
What is Road Rage?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines road rage in the follow way: "it involves a criminal act of violence, whereas aggressive driving can range from tailgating to speeding to running red lights."
This means that road rage can take on many different forms and actions. It is not a specific action; rather it is a negative emotional response and aggressive reaction to other drivers and driving situations.
How to Avoid Being a Road Rage Driver
There are many things that you can do to keep your temper under wraps when the weather warms up:
- Be self-aware: Awareness is the key to controlling your emotions when driving. If you are in a bad mood or you feel your patience is wearing thin, then you need to take a deep breath and refocus.
- Give yourself enough time: Drivers often get stressed out when they are in a rush, which could lead to road rage. Make sure you give yourself enough time to get to your destination.
- Turn up the AC: You can often cool down and avoid road rage by turning on the AC in your car and making yourself more comfortable.
- Take a break: If you are travelling a long distance and are starting to feel irritated, take a break. Even a 5 minute break can do a lot to improve you mood and help prevent road rage.
- Don’t sweat the small things: Other drivers are going to make mistakes – and so will you. If another driver makes a mistake, don’t yell at them or honk your horn. Just accept it and move on.
- Make sure you are well rested: Odds are that if you did not get a good night’s sleep you may be a little cranky when you start your morning commute. Make sure you get enough sleep and are well rested.
Learn More About Road Rage
Have you ever been guilt of road rage? Have you been a victim of road rage? What tips can you offer other drivers for how to best handle road rage situations?