There is almost nothing more terrifying when you’re driving than being targeted by a driver who is seeing red, whether you understand what has angered him or her. In fact, sometimes there isn’t a logical reason for why some drivers snap. They may take it personally if they’re cut off in traffic, or they might have imagined a slight. Regardless, an angry driver can threaten the lives of drivers in Georgia and elsewhere.
Many people label any form of aggressive driving as road rage. However, you may want to consider that road rage is different from aggressive driving. The latter consists of dangerous driving behaviors that may cause accidents, such as speeding, swerving in and out of lanes, running red lights and following other vehicles too closely. A person pulled over for aggressive driving may face minor traffic charges. On the other hand, road rage occurs when a driver loses control and deliberately attempts to harm another. The following behaviors are common in road rage incidents:
- Relentlessly chasing another driver through traffic
- Trying to run the other driver off the road or corner him or her
- Using a weapon inside the car, such as a firearm, knife or tool, against the other person
- Striking the other driver’s car with his or her own vehicle
- Attempting to get the other driver out of the car for a physical confrontation
The American Safety Council states that 218 murders and 12,610 injuries were credited to road rage over a seven-year period, and 66 percent of fatal traffic accidents are believed to be caused by aggressive driving. If you find yourself targeted by another driver in a case of suspected road rage, never drive home and let the other person know where you live. Use your cellphone to call 9-1-1, and attempt to calmly drive to a populated area where the possibility of witnesses may make the other driver think twice about harming you. You may be entitled to compensation if you are injured, whether intentionally or accidentally, by another driver.