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How to Prevent Road Rage

Road rage is a rising epidemic on the roads and highways of this country. While much attention has been paid to the other causes of car accidents, such as drunk driving and driver fatigue, road rage is often overlooked. The fact is that road rage is responsible for up to one-third of all accidents, and an estimated two-thirds of all fatalities, according to the NHTSA.

·What Is Road Rage Exactly?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration defines aggressive driving as “occurring when an individual commits a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property.” Road rage could be defined as driving without taking any consideration of the other cars on the road. Road rage happens when drivers let their emotions get the best of them, and drive recklessly because they are angered, annoyed and frustrated. In short, drivers experiencing road rage commit a series of traffic offenses because they are upset.

·How Can I Prevent Road Rage?

This article seeks to explain how to prevent feeling road rage – not how to deal with road rage in other drivers (see the article “How To Deal With An Aggressive Driver” for that topic).

The following are tips to help you feel more relaxed on the road, so that you will be less likely to experience road rage.

·Leave Yourself Enough Time

When we are rushed, we are more stressed. If you are late for work, school, or a very important meeting, every second counts. And when on the road, it can seem that the car in front of us, who is going about ten miles under the speed limit, is doing it on purpose – just to spite us! A ticking clock can definitely make your blood pressure rise, and the result can be careless, aggressive driving.

An easy fix for this to give yourself an extra five or ten minutes to get to your destination. That way unforeseen obstacles, such as a slow-moving car, won’t get under your skin. Simple things like packing the kids’ lunches the night before, or laying out your outfit for that day ahead of time, will give your extra time in the morning to get where you need to go. Having enough time can remove some anxiety from the morning commute.

·Listen To Soft Music

There’s a reason why piano music is normally played during dinner instead of, say, bone-crunching death metal. Music has a profound effect on our moods, and can also influence our driving style. Listen to loud, angry music and there’s a chance you will drive aggressively. Relaxing, soothing tunes can take the edge off your drive and allow you to feel calmer on the road.