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Road Rage: A Travel Season Nightmare

Our streets are going to be packed over the holiday season. There are roughly 5 million Floridians who will be traveling at least 50 miles from their home during this time. And this doesn’t even count the ones who will be staying local, but will still be out on the road. With all of the traffic, our accident risks are going to be much higher.
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Also during this time of year, drivers are likely to get agitated behind the wheel. It actually happened a lot more often than you think. According to the Complaints Board, nearly all (roughly 90 percent) of drivers in a recent study say that they have either seen road rage or have been a victim of road rage at least once over the last year. Throughout the study consisting of 7 years in the 90s, these incidents accounted for more than 200 murders and more than 10,000 injuries. Actual vehicles and firearms were the most commonly used weapons in these incidents. And the reasons for the heated debates were merely parking spaces, horn honking and slow drivers.

Our Oakland Park accident attorneys understand that this kind of behavior is the most severe form of aggressive driving. Other examples of this dangerous driving behavior include illegal passing, horn honking, tailgating, shouting and throwing out obscene gestures. All of these acts can quickly spiral into a rage behind the wheel. That’s why we’re asking all drivers to keep their cool behind the wheel during the busy holiday travel season.

“Road rage is driving under the influence of impaired emotions,” said Leon James, a professor of traffic psychology with the University of Hawaii. “It’s triggered by mental assumptions we’re making about other drivers—like assuming someone is doing something on purpose to bother you.”

Everyone can fall victim to rage behind the wheel. Old drivers, young drivers, male drivers and even female drivers can get heated in the driver’s seat. That’s why we’re here to suggest to you some safety tips to remember if you start to get angry out there:

-Treat yourself right. Get enough sleep and carry snacks with you to make sure you’re not hungry. Sleep deprivation and hunger can both turn a driver into a mad man in no time.

-Leave earlier. Allow yourself with lots of time to get to where you have to go. This will help to avoid rushing.

-Take a second to calm down. Pull over, calm and collect your thoughts if you notice yourself beginning to get angry behind the wheel.

-Remember that driving is not a contest. There are no winners and there are no losers when driving. We just all have to get to where we need to be and we all need to get there safely. It’s a group effort.

If you or someone you love has been involved in an automobile accident, contact Freeman, Mallard, Sharp & Gonzalez, LLC for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-561-7777 today!

More Blog Entries:

Florida Officials Warn of Holiday Roadway Dangers
, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, December 20, 2012

Officers Push Traffic Enforcement through Holidays
, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, December 14, 2012

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