Avoiding Being a Victim of Road Rage

The Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office newsletter, “Communicator,” July 2018 helps us avoid being a victim of road rage.

“The ‘Communicator’ received a request asking for tips and best practices to avoid being a victim ore experiencing ‘Road Rage.’ We in turn reached out to our Traffic Investigations Unit who was pleased to provide the following:

  1. Be well rested when you drive. The more tired you are the more easily you will become irritated. Also, the more exhausted you are the more likely you are to be distracted and less observant which will tend to cause driving errors that appear aggressive and possibly provoking road rage.
  2. Listen to traffic reports on the radio to avoid congested areas. You can do this on side streets before you reach the highway where congestion is more likely.
  3. Know alternative routes to your destination. This would include back roads that have less traffic. Even if they are a few miles longer, it is usually worth it to avoid long delays in traffic.
  4. Avoid a lot of noise and loud music. It is well known that lots of noise puts more stress on a person. Preferably, listen to soft music or talk radio. In addition, remind passengers to keep the noise down.
  5. Try driving at cooler times of day. Heat, especially when it cannot be controlled makes people more irritable. It will also be easier on your engine to drive when it is cooler.
  6. You can help in preventing road rage by giving yourself plenty of time to get to your destination. Knowing you may be running late automatically puts you into “speed mode” where you are more tempted to get around other drivers to get where you are going.
  7. If you are running late call the person and tell them you will be late even if you must pull over to do so. Knowing that the person/s you are going expect you will be late takes a load of stress off you and you do not have to rush to meet their expectations.
  8. Avoid driving if you are already emotionally upset or excited.
  9. Exercise patience while driving. Patience prevents a multitude of problems including car collisions. Mentally relax when unexpected delays happen. Just be glad you aren’t alone. Everyone around you is delayed too. You will be preventing road rage in yourself by practicing patience.
  10. Signal early before braking.
  11. Give plenty of room for the driver behind hen changing lanes.
  12. Keep at least two car lengths of space ahead and behind your vehicle.
  13. Always signal when changing lanes.
  14. Count two seconds before proceeding at a stop sign.
  15. Don’t step on your gas pedal to get through a yellow light.

Using all these polite driving habits will keep you from seeming like an aggressive driver, and thus preventing road rage in drivers around you.”

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