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Drivers letting their emotions get the best of them while they’re behind the wheel of a 3000 pound car is extremely dangerous, and road rage is becoming more common despite the fact it is extremely avoidable if time management and self control are both utilized.
As the number of cars on the road increases, not only are more vehicles zooming on the highways and pushing parking lots beyond capacity, but there are a lot more angry drivers behind their steering wheels, as well.
The anger that these drivers express on the road has been coined by many as “road rage,” and just about every driver you ask has experienced it one time or another.
Road rage is defined on the Merriam-Webster website as “a motorist’s uncontrolled anger that is usually provoked by another motorist’s irritating act and is expressed in aggressive or violent behavior.”
While many situations that stem road rage can be the act of someone else that is uncontrollable, the driver’s reaction is controllable, thus road rage is an avoidable scenario.
Post-dramatic stress disorder
In April of this year, a video of a Marine sergeant at Camp Pendleton in San Diego County went viral after the man reacted violently toward a driver and the driver’s sister, who’s car rear ended him.
In the video, the sergeant is seen kicking the victim’s car, screaming profanities, and eventually having to be restrained before being arrested by military police.
While this could be seen as a situation of post-dramatic stress disorder, it is a prime example of overreaction and careless driving on the road resulting in further emotional damage.
Something as small as being cut off can set the calmest of people off, and there should no longer be tolerance of road rage as a daily occurrence that is acceptable.
Not only is it making streets and highways more dangerous and resulting in reckless driving to combat the initial issue that created the rage, but younger children that are present in the automobiles are witnessing this, and may find it to be acceptable behavior to perform once they are behind the wheel.
Many steps can be taken to prevent yourself from cases of road rage, including leaving on time or earlier for your destination.
Being on a time crunch will create the perfect environment for an angry driver, as constant red lights and heavy traffic to delay the drivers arrival can easy result in anger.
Realizing that the driver who cut you off or nearly side swiped you could have not had malicious or obvious intent to do you harm is another tip of advice, as you could have been in their blind spot or just not been in their view.
To go along with 76’s “Stop Honkaholism” campaign, order a “honk suppressor,” or even a stress ball, and place it in your glove compartment just in case you need to vent.
It will always be better to take your anger out on a foam ball rather than your car horn, and will probably save your middle finger from doing any unnecessary exercises.
Take your time, treat your car well, and respect the other drivers around you, as even though some situations on the road are out of your control, road rage will never be the answer.