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Don't let aggressive driving trigger road rage

According to one research study done by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, aggressive driving is a real problem for today's motorists. Data suggests that almost 80 percent of motorists in the United States exhibited aggression, anger or actual road rage one or more times in the past year while driving.

While there is a difference between aggressive driving and road rage, the line is blurred and drivers can segue from one into the other with alarming ease.

Aggressive driving is a catch-all phrase encompassing all unsafe driving actions that are done deliberately with bad intent and/or a callous lack of regard for others' safety.

Things like tailgating, cutting drivers off in traffic and disregarding traffic signals are all examples of aggressive driving that can trigger acts of road rage.

When these aggressive acts escalate to or inspire road rage, the results can be tragic. Road rage examples include:

  • Flipping drivers off
  • Cursing at other motorists
  • Brandishing weapons
  • Ramming or sideswiping cars
  • Forcing drivers off the highway

If you want to avoid causing or contributing to road rage incidents, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Don't respond to other drivers' aggression
  • Let other motorists merge into traffic
  • Use your turning signals
  • Follow the rules of the road
  • Don't follow too closely
  • Don't blind drivers with your high beams
  • Use your horn sparingly only to warn drivers of dangers
  • Don't engage or make eye contact with angry drivers

If you wind up injured by an aggressive or out of control driver and in an accident as a result, you may be able to file a claim for compensation against the driver's auto insurance company.

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