Road Rage Since 1990, it has killed hundreds of people and injured over 10,000. Its victims are from all ages, socioeconomic groups, and areas of the country. What is known as “road rage” is growing at an alarming rate. What is Road Rage? Road rage, also called intermittent explosive disorder, is a term used to refer to violent incidents resulting from stress caused by accidents or incidents on roadways. It is often a natural extension of aggressive driving. Essentially road rage is aggressive driving – attempting to injure or kill another driver because of a traffic dispute.
It involves unusually aggressive responses to a variety of traffic incidents. Road ragers may be upset by minor driving errors, like not using a turn signal, or poor driving habits. They may become enraged by a bigger infraction, like tailgating. They may retaliate with their car by forcing someone off the road, or they may follow the driver until he stops. Then they get out of their car and attack the driver in person.
Road rage frustration and aggression are not caused by traffic. It is a learned cultural habit of retaliation when you feel like retaliating.
It’s a free choice we exercise. When we are frustrated in heavy traffic, we have a choice of how we’re going to respond. In its simplest form, road rage occurs when a driver reacts angrily to other drivers, cutting them off, tailgating, gesturing or waving a fist. At its worst, the angry driver may become more aggressive and try to kill or injure another driver. What does it involve? It involves unusually aggressive responses to a variety of traffic incidents. Road ragers may be upset by minor driving errors, like not using a turn signal, or poor driving habits.
They may become enraged by a bigger infraction, like tailgating. They may retaliate with their car by forcing someone off the road, or they may follow the driver until he stops. Then they get out of their car and attack the driver in person. Road rage includes various driver acts and types of behavior. Speeding or aggressive acceleration, cutting others, weaving in and out of traffics, sound the vehicle horn, flashing lights excessively, making rude gestures, shouting verbal abuse, hitting another person, throwing objects outside the vehicle – all of these are considered road rage.
Who is involved? Aggressive drivers can come from both genders, all ages, races and socioeconomic levels. Even persons who are usually mild-mannered can blow their top behind the wheel. These persons may only become mad when they’re on the road. However, persons who are typically cynical, rude, angry or aggressive get angry more often. They also tend to rage at home, at work and on the road. What causes road rage? Since road rage has been a problem for many years, it is curious to know what causes it. Why some drivers cannot hold their nerves while others drive normally?
In many occasions road rage is caused by pure anger. Even calm and well behaved people can fall into the road rage trap. If a driver gets irritated by another driver behavior it is likely a road rage at to follow. Simple events such as not showing gratitude gesture after a driver has been let to pass first through a lane can trigger serious road rage response that is likely to lead to serious consequences for all involved in the situation. Effects The physical effects of road rage is when anger triggers the body’s fight or flight response.
Other emotions that trigger this response include fear, excitement and anxiety. The adrenal glands flood the body with stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. The brain shunts blood away from the gut and towards the muscles, in preparation for physical exertion. Heart rate, blood pressure and respiration increase, the body temperature rises and the skin perspires. The mind is sharpened and focused. Health problems that occur is the constant flood of stress chemicals and associated metabolic changes that accompany recurrent unmanaged anger can eventually cause harm to many different systems of the body.
Some of the short and long term health problems that have been linked to unmanaged anger include: headache, digestion problems, insomnia, increased anxiety, depression, high blood pressure, skin problems, heart attack, or stroke. Road rage affects Canadians in many ways. It makes the streets feel less safe for those others driving. It causes Canadians to fear for their lives while doing the simplest of everyday task. Road rage intensifiers Besides overcrowding on the highway, there also may be several chicken-and-egg scenarios. First, the rager may be violent in other parts of his or her life, for instance at home or with a family.
Or the tension of the commute may make domestic violence worse. Secondly, the road rager may be inflamed by the absent-minded or stupid driving of those talking on cell phones. This is common. But a person in an argument on a cell phone him or herself can also flare into a rage about something on the road. Verbal confrontations on the phone can lead to confrontations on the road. Statistics * A total of 4,822,000 of Canadians (20. 4% of the adult population in Canada), have already been victims of road rage. In 16. 1% of cases, the aggressors have committed very violent acts which means that 4. % or 202,500 adults have been aggressed violently sustaining injuries as a result of road rage. * In addition to the 4. 2% of individuals injured in such incidences, in 6. 6% of cases, the aggressor hit the vehicle of the victim and in 5. 3% of cases he or she deliberately collided with the victim’s vehicle, causing injury. * According to 62. 9% of the overall adult population and 65. 5% of victims of road rage, the judicial system is not strict enough with aggressive drivers while 25. 6% of all citizens and 23. 1% of victims find it to be sufficiently strict. The idea that the justice system is not strict enough is more discernible in 66. 4% of women, 71. 8% of individuals in the 55-to-64–age bracket, 72. 7% of retirees and 70. 1% of Quebeckers. On the other hand, 30. 5% of men find it sufficiently strict along with 42. 9% of individuals in the 18-to-24-age bracket and 30. 7% of residents of Atlantic Canada. * Statistics show that 250,000 people have died in traffic since 1990. It is believed that two-thirds of these deaths are at least partially caused by aggressive driving, although only 218 were found to be a direct cause of angry drivers.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 66 percent of all annual traffic fatalities are caused by aggressive driving actions, such as passing on the right, running red lights and tailgating. * In addition to fatalities, there have been an estimated 20 million injuries; 12,610 caused by aggressive driving. These numbers show that there has been a 51 percent increase in aggressive driving incidents since 1990. Of these incidents, 37 percent involved the use of a firearm, 28 percent involved other weapons, and 35 percent involved the use of a car as a weapon.
Related to this increase in aggressive driving incidents may be the fact that the number of drivers on the road is increasing; as of 1990, 91 percent of people drove to work. Percent of drivers who have shouted, cursed or made gestures to other drivers in the past year (2010) What are the impacts? The increase of aggressive driving in recent years has been attributed to more congested roadways and fewer classes in driver’s education. In addition, there is a general lack of emotional control among drivers. Some are provoked by the actions of another driver; others are set off by roadway congestion.
Most are caused by a change in moods and reactions when these drivers get behind the wheel. This is a serious issue for traffic safety. Solutions for the rager * Expressing anger in healthy ways * If you feel out of control, walk away from the situation temporarily, until you cool down. * Recognize and accept the emotion as normal and part of life. * Try to pinpoint the exact reasons why you feel angry. * Once you have identified the problem, consider coming up with different strategies on how to remedy the situation. * Do something physical, such as going for a run or playing sport. Solutions for the victim If you are being tailgated, change lanes. * If someone wants to pass, slow down and let them. * Don’t return gestures. * Stay behind the person who is angry at all costs (they can do less damage if you are behind them) * If necessary, pull off the road or take an exit and let them go on by. * Don’t make eye contact. Regardless of the road rage genesis it can cause a lot of damage. To prevent it a driver must follow a few simple rules. Be a courteous driver, always signal your intentions, don’t tailgate, watch your high beams, and observe parking lot “rules” especially in the busy hours.
These might sound simple but a lot of drivers forget to follow them and become victims of road rage. The best way to avoid being the aggressor is to have the right mindset before getting behind the wheel of any vehicle. Patience, forgiveness, a good night’s sleep, acceptance of others’ faults, and realizing that everyone makes mistakes when driving are necessary attributes to have when you take that vehicle out on the road. As you can see, approximately 2 out of 3 drivers consider themselves almost perfect (10 or 9) in excellence as a driver (64%), while 1 in 3 (34%) consider themselves above average (5 to 8).
This indicates to me that most drivers overlook their own mistakes and overestimate their competence. Bibliography http://www. coedu. usf. edu/zalaquett/roadrage/roadrage. html http://www. worldlegionofpower. com/drnerenberg/quickfacts. htm http://www. nyu. edu/pubs/counterblast/issue1_nov01/articles/schuchardt. html http://www. smartmotorist. com/traffic-and-safety-guideline/aggressive-driving-facts. html http://ezinearticles. com/? What-Causes-Road-Rage? &id=4645199 http://www. drdriving. org/articles/testimony. htm http://www. roadragers. com/what-is-road-rage. htm
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Road Rage Since 1990. (2016, Oct 22). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/road-rage-since-1990/