For drivers, road rage does not need any introduction. But for those who do not understand this phenomenon, road rage is the aggressive and out-of-the-ordinary behavior of some drivers. It could be the result of years of piled up anger, road gridlock, stress, loud music, tailgating and making obscene gestures to other drivers, etc.  

Whatever the case may be, one thing is for sure: road rage is not worth it.

Here is an incident narrated by a reddit user,

“I didn't see what caused the incident, however I saw the motorcycle rider come right along side the car and made some gestures towards the driver in the car and then the motorcycle rider kicked the side of the car. The bike tried to speed away but the car followed. The car ended up rear ending the guy on the bike and drove right over him. I stopped and helped as much as I could until paramedics arrived, however the motorcycle rider eventually died at the hospital.”

Driving and Texting

This is the story of a motorcyclist who told a BMW driver to stop texting while driving – and what happened in return? He became a victim of classic road rage. Samuel David, while driving in Los Angeles, noticed a black BMW driver texting and not paying attention to the road. Sam drove up to the driver at a red traffic light and leaned over to yell at the driver, telling him to stop texting. The BMW driver did not appreciate this and started blowing his horn non-stop and driving aggressively.

Sam, realizing that he was being followed, slowed down to give way to the driver. However, the BMW driver hit him and drove off, leaving Sam with two hairline fractures in his left shoulder and a broken left foot, along with a concussion.

Road Rage Kills, including Children

On 20th October, 2015, America saw one of the worst road rage cases, when a 4-year old Lilly Garcia was killed in an incident that enraged the world. The father of the girl was driving a red pickup and had just picked up Lilly and her 7-year old brother from school. Both the children were sitting in the back seat.

Tony Torrez, who was charged with murder in this case, was driving a Toyota Sedan. He claimed that Garcia’s truck tried to run him off the road and that is what caused him to open fire on the pickup. One of the many shots fired, ended up hitting the little girl in the head. She was rushed to the hospital but did not survive the wounds.

Gang of Bikers against a Range Rover

According to the New York City Police Department, in October 2013, a man driving a Range Rover with his wife and 2-year old daughter, struck a motorcyclist, breaking his leg. He claimed that it was an accident, which is why he pulled over to help. But as soon as he pulled over, the entire gang of bikers surrounded his vehicle and started hitting it all over. As a result, the driver of the SUV pulled away, hitting more bikers in the process. Eventually, the SUV driver was cornered and beaten and was later treated at a local hospital for slashes to his face. His wife and child were not injured.

Incidents like these make it obvious that road rage harms, irrespective of who is involved and the type of vehicle. While one party may sustain physical injuries or even death in the worst case scenario, the other would end up spending a considerable amount of time in prison, or at least pay hefty fines.

Let Go of Anger – Road Rage is Not Worth It

Are You Causing Road Rage?

What is reasonable behavior to us, in reality may not be acceptable to others on the road. The fact of the matter is that some of us have the tendency of causing an aggressive outburst of anger in fellow drivers. Therefore, ask yourself these questions to check if you could be playing a role in aggravating the situation:

  • Do you often use your phone while driving, or drive while distracted?
  • Do you keep your car’s high beams on, even when there is oncoming traffic?
  • Do you take turns or switch lanes abruptly and without using signals?
  • Do you fail to check blind spots before making turns?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you might be the cause of someone’s road rage. 

Is there a Law against Road Rage?

Road rage cases may be prosecuted as assault and battery (with or without a vehicle) or “vehicular homicide” (if someone is killed).  Reckless driving might be classified as road rage if strong evidence is available. This would most likely result in fines for the drivers involved. Charges for road rage cases can go on to include everything ranging from property damage to criminal proceedings for manslaughter.

Let Go of Anger – Road Rage is Not Worth It

How to Handle Road Rage?

Road rage incidents are almost always avoidable if you control your emotions. If, in any case, you have managed to agitate another driver, do not react or retaliate on the road. Irrespective of who is at fault, never forget that your vehicle is your biggest shield. Knee jerk reaction in the form of chasing or trying to harm the other driver will only make a bad situation worse.

And remember – avoid making eye contact with the agitated driver. This might be taken as ‘eyeballing’ and get you into more trouble.

If you’re a motorcycle rider who is sure that he is going to get hit by the car chasing you, slow down and give way to the other driver.  

Also, try reaching a well crowded area in order to avoid getting cornered. If not, then try to get to the nearest Police station and get help.

In any case, if you feel like someone is trying to run you off the road, or has taken a weapon out that they might use, call 911 immediately to get assistance.

Always keep in mind that decisions made in a state of anger and distress can backfire. Try and remain vigilant, careful and fully in control of your emotions – the road is not a place for your rage.

Have you fallen victim to or witnessed someone’s road rage? Tell us what happened.