Road rage happens more often than you would think. Drivers swerve in, cut someone off, and hands fly up in the air in anger. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that almost 80 percent of drivers in 2015 displayed signs of road rage while behind the wheel. While road rage is common, that does not mean it is right to succumb to frustration and let your emotion take over.
It is beneficial to know the types of road rage and how to control each—this will help you combat the issue the next time you are behind the wheel.
The 5 Types of Road Rage
Passive Aggressive Road Rage
This type of road rage comes from the person who wants to maintain control of the road covertly. Wanting to avoid direct confrontation, this type of driver tries to speed up to disallow another car from merging into their lane. They seldom acknowledge the presence of another driver.
Competitive Road Rage
This type of rage comes from a person with competitive behavior when behind the wheel. They will want to be the first through the intersection and will weave in and out of traffic to arrive at their destination “first.” Competitive road rage often results in reckless driving because a meltdown will ensue if things do not turn out the way this type of driver wants.
Impatient Road Rage
A lot of people get impatient while driving—and impatience typically leads to reckless driving. Impatient drivers believe that what they have to do or where they have to go is more important than everyone else on the road. An impatient driver is someone who, for example, might merge last second just before a construction zone.
Vocal Road Rage
Drivers can yell about something in the privacy of their car, or they can roll down the window and let other drivers know exactly what they think. Though these actions can be small, they can lead to a screaming match, which could escalate into physical violence.
Violent Road Rage
Violent road rage will often result in the enraged person getting out of their vehicle—typically at a stop. While out of their vehicle, enraged drivers will continue with vocal threats and may even cause physical harm to the other driver’s person or vehicle. Drivers who experience violent road rage sometimes use their vehicle as a weapon as well.
Tips on Controlling Road Rage
- Stay in your car—getting out of the car should never cross your mind
- Do not use driving as a way to blow off steam
- Breathe through the frustration
- Do not take someone else’s driving errors or mistakes personally
- Remember that it is not your job to punish others for poor driving
- Train yourself on how you properly react to certain driving situations
- Recognize that other drivers are human and thus susceptible to mistakes
If your road rage gets the best of you and results in an accident, you will want to hire a West Linn criminal defense attorney to help you with your case. Do not go to court alone.