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Summer Heat Can Increase Road Rage Accidents

Most of us have witnessed aggressive driving on the road, but how often have you wondered what might actually cause it? Also known as “road rage,” aggressive driving can occur for a multitude of reasons. Factors at play often include a driver’s personality and whether or not they felt “wronged” by another motorist – but even the weather can play a role in whether or not someone decides to drive dangerously.

You may have heard before that when it’s hot, people get more aggressive. As it turns out, there’s a lot of credence to the notion that high heat can result in boiling tempers. One psychologist found a positive correlation between heat and violent crime while another study found a linear increase in car horn honking among motorists presumed not to be running their AC while driving in hot weather.

What Does Road Rage Look Like?

The science above suggests the possibility that there might be a lot more hot-headed drivers on the road when the mercury begins to rise. When that happens, the types of behavior associated with road rage may be more common.

Road rage can include aggressive driving behavior such as:

  • Speeding
  • Weaving in traffic
  • Erratic driving and sudden maneuvers
  • Failing to signal
  • Tailgating
  • Blocking other vehicles
  • Yelling
  • Hand gestures
  • Brandishing a weapon
  • Driving in blind spots
  • Unreasonable use of a car horn
  • Disregarding traffic signals and laws

How Do I Avoid a Road Rage Accident?

The best way to avoid getting into a car accident with a road-raging driver is to drive defensively and keep calm. Things will only become more dangerous if you allow your anger to affect your safe driving.

When dealing with a road raging motorist, follow these tips:

  • Allow the aggressive driver to pass
  • Don’t make eye contact.
  • Avoid driving aggressively or retaliating in any other way
  • Call 9-1-1
  • If followed, drive to a secure location, such as a police station

I Was Injured by a Road Rage Driver, What Now?

If you are involved in a collision with a road rage driver, try to stay calm and immediately call 9-1-1. You don’t know how dangerous the other driver is, but you do know they are a dangerous driver. If their road rage was sparked by something the other driver believes you did, getting out of your car right now may be dangerous. Avoid interacting with the other driver until the police arrive.

If the other driver fails to stop, try to remember the color, make, and model of their vehicle as well as their license plate – even if you only remember a few. If you were able to see the driver, give the police as best of a physical description as possible.

Document the Scene

After you’ve received medical attention for your injuries, document the crash site. Use your cell phone or a camera to take photos of the damage to each car and the surrounding area, such as relevant road signs, road markings, street names, signals, etc. While the series of events that led up to the crash is fresh in your mind, write them down to create a valuable contemporaneous record. Be as detailed as possible!

If there are any witnesses to the accident, collect their statements and contact information. This can be critical evidence supporting your claim that you were not at fault for the accident.

Contact an Attorney for Personal Injury Support

As soon as possible, secure legal representation to help you fight for the compensation you may need to afford your medical bills after suffering a personal injury. If you were injured by an aggressive driver in a road rage incident, you shouldn’t have to afford the cost of your medical care on your own.

Attorneys such as ours at Smolich and Smolich can help you fight to protect your claim. For more information, contact us online.