All of us have come across an aggressive driver at some point. Sometimes we just witness aggressive driving, but don't actually encounter it.
When drivers lose their cool on the road, they may resort to shouting, giving rude gestures, speeding and erratic driving, tailgating or following other drivers, or getting out of a car to confront someone.
There are many reasons why drivers may become aggressive on the road. According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration the leading reasons are:
- Drivers become impatient when running late, experiencing inconveniences or encountering backed-up traffic.
- Drivers feel safer engaging in aggressive behavior from the anonymity of their cars.
- Some drivers engage in habitual aggressive driving and have no regard for others' safety or the law.
How to safely deal with aggressive drivers
When encountering aggressive drivers, the most important thing you should do is not take their anger towards you personally. An aggressive driver may be under stress and may not normally behave this way. Here are some tips on how to prevent the escalation of a minor incident:
- Simply ignore a driver who yells, gives a rude gesture or honks at you.
- Pull over and let a tailgating driver pass you.
- Keep a safe distance between you and a driver who is speeding, weaving through traffic or behaving erratically.
- When confronted at a red light or stop sign — lock your doors and roll up your window.
- When being chased or followed — call the police or drive to the nearest police station.
Hire an experienced attorney if you were injured by an aggressive driver
If you were involved in a crash with someone who was engaging in aggressive driving or road rage, you will need to speak to an experienced car accident attorney to pursue a strong legal claim. That's because insurance companies will use any argument they can to avoid compensating you. They may argue that your crash was intentional and not caused by negligence. They may also argue that you contributed to the incident in some way.
The truth is, many crashes caused by aggressive driving aren't actually intentional. For example, a driver who is speeding and weaving through traffic may unintentionally run another driver off the road. In less common cases, aggressive drivers may intentionally try to run other drivers off the road or purposely ram another car. In this case, you may be able to file a civil lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
The Walnut Creek, California attorneys at Clancy & Diaz can gather the facts and help you put together a solid legal claim. We can also negotiate with the insurance companies for a fair settlement and take them to trial if they refuse to pay.
To schedule your free case evaluation, simply fill out our online contact form.