Emotions may run high if you are stuck in rush hour traffic. Whether you are running late to work or rushing to get to an important appointment, getting stuck behind a slow driver is irritating. You may have experienced road rage when in these types of situations. If you have, you are certainly not alone. According to AAA, approximately 80% of drivers in the U.S. admit that they have, at some point within the last year, experienced road rage.

While road rage is something that most have felt, it is the dangerous driving behaviors that accompany this feeling that put people in danger. Aggressive driving behaviors lead to serious car accidents, injuries and deaths. AAA also reported that at least 56% of deadly car accidents involve a form of aggressive driving, such as speeding.

What to look for

It is critical to be able to identify the signs of an aggressive driver so you can potentially avoid a situation. Signs of an aggressive driver include the following:

  • Speeding or racing other drivers
  • Excessive lane changing, swerving in between cars
  • Blocking other vehicles from changing lanes
  • Tailgating or riding too close to the car ahead
  • Yelling obscenities or displaying inappropriate hand gestures
  • Excessive horn honking

In some cases, enraged drivers may purposely collide with another vehicle or get out of their vehicle to confront another driver. Drivers with road rage may start a physical altercation, some with a deadly weapon.

What should you do?

While you may feel like engaging with an aggressive driver or defending yourself when a confrontation presents itself, law enforcement officials suggest that you refrain from interacting with these motorists. Rather than yell back or return hand gestures, you should avoid making eye contact altogether. Instead, contact law enforcement officers immediately and alert them to the problem. This may reduce the likelihood of a fatal automobile accident.