Speeding and other aggressive driving behaviors are among the leading causes of highway crashes and fatalities in
Pennsylvania. According to PennDOT reports, there were 31,083 crashes involving speeding in 2016, including 458 fatalities. Tailgating was involved in 6,879 crashes, seven of which were fatal. To deter aggressive drivers, PennDOT partners with state and local police departments to conduct aggressive driving enforcement. Since its launch in 2006, more than 580 roadways have been targeted with additional enforcement and education. The aggressive driving enforcement wave for 2019 kicks off July 22nd.
One of the most important ways to combat aggressive driving behaviors is awareness. A recent AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety research study found that 80% of motorists admit to aggressive driving habits and expressed significant anger and aggression behind the wheel. The study also revealed that drivers in the northeast are more likely to confront each other. Still, many motorists don’t admit to being an aggressive driver because they might not realize they are one.
Aggressive driving behaviors include:
x Purposefully tailgating;
x Running red and yellow traffic lights;
x Weaving in and out of traffic;
x Yelling at another driver;
x Honking to show annoyance or anger;
x Making angry gestures;
x Trying to block another vehicle from changing lanes; and
x Cutting off another vehicle on purpose.
If you identify with engaging in any of the above behaviors you may be an aggressive driver, and could be putting yourself, your passengers, and other people on the road at an increased risk of a crash.
Follow these tips for what to do if you encounter an aggressive driver:
x Get out of their way and don’t challenge them;
x Stay relaxed, avoid eye contact and ignore rude gestures;
x Don’t block the passing lane if you are driving slower than most of the traffic; and
x Do not attempt to follow or pursue the vehicle. You or a passenger may call the police.
Don’t be a part of the problem! Resolve to be a part of the solution…