According to data released by the NHTSA, Colorado ranks second for deaths caused by aggressive driving and road rage. The report shows that road rage was a contributing factor in 1 in every 10 deadly car accidents in Colorado in 2016. These numbers are alarming, especially since road rage can be prevented.
Road rage is an extreme form of aggressive driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines it as the ‘angry and violent behaviors’ of aggressive drivers. Generally, road rage accidents have the potential for severe injury or death.
Have you been injured in a road rage accident? A Grand Junction Car Accident Lawyer can inform you of your rights, obligations, and legal rights.
What Is Road Rage?
Aggressive driving, or reckless driving, is a class 2 traffic misdemeanor in Colorado. This is defined as driving with wanton disregard for the safety of other road users. Usually, road rage starts as aggressive driving then escalates to more dangerous levels.
If unaddressed, road rage can quickly lead to a fatal accident. This is why drivers must learn how to recognize it.
Common road rage behaviors include:
- Swearing, yelling or making lewd gestures at other drivers.
- Honking the horn loudly and excessively.
- Weaving in and out of traffic
- Running a stop sign or red light
- Flashing headlights excessively
- Cutting off another vehicle
- Driving too close to a vehicle in the same lane
- Passing or changing lanes illegally
Road rage can also involve verbally abusing other drivers. In most cases, the enraged driver seeks to provoke other drivers into a rage.
How Should You Respond to Road Rage?
An enraged driver will usually try to get your attention in any way possible. They might yell or make offensive gestures at you to get you to respond in kind. Ultimately, their attempts could cause you to get angered and lose your focus, leading to a car accident.
Learning to deal with an enraged driver is a crucial skill. In extreme situations, it could mean the difference between life and death. Here is what you should do:
- If you are on a non-busy road, ignore the driver or try to move a few spaces away from them. You can also slow down or take the nearest exit.
- Keep your emotions in check as they are crucial to your driving. If you begin to feel enraged, pull into a parking lot until you have calmed down.
- Avoid making any gestures or showing any signs of anger or frustration.
- Don’t respond when a driver cuts you off as you may enrage them further.
- Don’t participate in a race with an enraged driver.
- Apologize with a kind smile or wave if you make a mistake
Contact a Grand Junction Car Accident Lawyer Today
Most people are aware of the dangers of road rage. Some have even experienced road rage accidents first-hand. Overall, the consensus is that road rage driver behaviors can have far-reaching and devastating consequences on all those involved.
Fortunately, you can pursue damages if you were injured in a road rage accident. The compensation you receive can go toward paying your medical expenses, lost income, and other injury-related losses.
Contact Cimarron Ridge Legal Group today to discuss your case with a knowledgeable Grand Junction Car Accident Lawyer.