Road rage occurs when one person gets angry at another driver and becomes violent. It’s generally caused, by a person doing something that one driver feels is incorrect and then needs to become the judge and jury and tell that driver of their mistake. This can be in the form of yelling or honking or in the worst-case scenario getting out of the car and abusing the ‘at fault’ driver either verbally or physically.
There can many factors that induce road rage, but mostly it is caused by the need to control a situation. Unfortunately driving at times can be chaotic and stressful. The best way to drive in these situations is to remain calm and realise that not everyone is going to do the right thing all the time.
Keeping Calm on the Road
A huge part of avoiding road rage is to just keep calm. We all have blind spots and driving in tough situations can easily aggravate the most calm drivers.
- Practise GOMO (Get Over It & Move On) – Remember that people are not perfect, they are going to make mistakes. The best way to deal with this is to do your best to avoid them and let it go. Odds are they won’t learn by anything you do, so just leave them be and pay attention to what you are doing.
- Don’t Honk Others – Honking should only be done to alert others to something, such as when traffic has moved, and they haven’t noticed. A short polite toot is all that’s needed.
- Resist the Urge to Hurry – When you’re late you’re usually stressed out. Take your time and realise that going faster does not equate to much saved time for the trip.
- Don’t Annoy Others – Yelling or making hand gestures to others, will just incite rage. Try to drive with a smile and learn to say sorry for any mistakes you make.
When Another Driver Rages
It can be difficult to deal with another driver that is raging at you, but with these tips you can learn how to handle yourself and to stop the problems becoming worse:
- Record & Report – If a driver is showing aggressive behaviour, record their plates and make a report at the police station. Police take road rage very seriously as it often leads to major accidents. However, try not to use your phone if you are driving. One of the best ways to record road rage drivers is with a dash cam.
- Don’t Engage with Them – Never engage with a person that is suffering from road rage. Ignore them and report the behaviour later. Without anyone responding they will soon see the pointlessness in their actions and leave you alone.
- Shrug it Off – So you made a mistake and now someone is angry. Just shrug it off, if they’re angry that’s their problem, don’t allow it to ruin your day. Nobody’s perfect.