According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Florida ranks very high in the number of fatalities attributed to aggressive driving. Sometimes called "road rage," aggressive driving includes violations such as:
- Following a vehicle too closely;
- Unsafely and improperly changing lanes;
- Improper passing, especially from the right-hand side;
- Exceeding the speed limit;
- Blocking the passing lane;
- Erratically speeding up or slowing down;
- Violating traffic signs.
Road rage is often the result of a driver's loss of self-control, stress or breakdown, often exacerbated by drugs and alcohol. Aggressive drivers tend to respond violently to drivers expressing irritation or blame. If you are being targeted by an aggressive driver, put your pride away and adjust your behavior to deflate the confrontation. Consider the following:
- Do not use return gestures.
- Avoid eye contact.
- Do not use the horn.
- Pull over to the right lane, slow down and look for the next exit.
- Drive to a safe and crowded location if you are followed.
- Make sure you wear a seat belt and all your doors are locked.
- Take note of the license plate number, color and model of vehicle.
- Report the driver to the local police, describing the location and vehicle.
In Florida, aggressive driving as such is not a violation, but the various components of road rage are. All motorists are subject to becoming more aggressive in traffic jams or when faced with slowly moving and obstructing vehicles. The danger comes when we let our built-up frustration get the better of us and overpower our sense of caution.
If you have been hurt in a car accident caused by someone else, call the Daytona Beach attorneys of Johnson & Gilbert PA today toll free at (800) 556-8890 and locally at (386) 673-4412 or send us an email to arrange a free consultation.