We are all a little guilty of getting wound up over things, or other peoples actions. It happens, it’s human nature and ‘being annoyed’ has been around since we all have. But what about when it happens while you are driving? Are you able to control your emotions and keep them in check?
Here’s Wikipedia’s definition: ”Road rage is an aggressive or angry behavior by a driver of an automobile or other motor vehicle. Such behavior might include rude gestures, verbal insults, deliberately driving in an unsafe or threatening manner, or making threats. Road rage can lead to altercations, assaults, and collisions which result in injuries and even deaths…”
Scary stuff! Road rage technically refers to anything from the very small remarks that are aimed to ‘wind up’ other drivers to the more serious situations when tempers are let loose to do the worst possible kind of damage. It is not unknown for people to be killed in road rage incidents, so this is something that you as a driver or learner driver should keep in mind. Accidents do happen out of human error or just plain old bad luck, things can often get heated between the two parties involved.
An example of this can be seen in the case of Shelinda Dolores Arrington, a 21 year old living in Fairfax, Virginia. She unfortunately got into an argument with the driver of a black Chevrolet in May of this year. Pulling up at the scene of the accident just before midday on a Friday afternoon, she stepped out of her car to confront the driver according to the police.
At some point during the exchange she was hit by a car causing her major traumatic injury that went onto kill her. The police were unsure whether it belonged to the same driver who she was arguing with or if there was someone else involved in the case. It was also unclear at the time whether the two parties knew each other on a more personal level. Road rage was not ruled out in this case and investigations are still ongoing. The other car involved sped off leaving the scene of the accident. The victim was pronounced dead a short while later at a hospital.
This is a horrific and extreme example of what can happen when things go drastically wrong, what looked as though it should have been a simple exchange of personal and insurance details ended up in death. Whether this situation could have been different or not is debatable as there are not many witnesses to the crime.
We hope that you will enjoy a long and happy driving career without having to deal with or be involved in an incident like this one. Body language, tone of voice and conduct are all ways in which a driver can help diffuse a potentially violent situation. There are common sense points like not being verbally abusive or using aggressive no matter how much you feel like retaliating. These simple points will hopefully go someway to helping calm things down.