Thesis: Road rage is a major problem in the United States, it causes accidents, anger, fear, and danger to our roadways everyday. Audience: Anyone who struggles with anger management while driving, or the typical aggressive driver. Also teenagers, adults, and elderly people. Purpose: To inform all drivers of the unsafe and unpredictable behavior present on our roadways. Also to help understand road rage is a problem people have because of their attitude and they bring harm to others. Publication: The Eagle, Naples Daily News, or a free public postmaster on any internet resource.
As you " re driving on your way to work one morning you notice a brand new bright red Corvette approaching fast in your rear view mirror. The speed limit on this 2-lane, curvy road you are on is 55 mph, however the aggressive sports car driver behind you has no regard for the speed limit or your safety. Next thing you know the exhaust from the machine behind you roars as the red bullet begins to make his move. He flies past you at an incredible speed and nonchalantly extends his middle finger, not noticing the curve ahead... Just around the corner another speedy car draws near and the red beast panics as he swerves back into your lane almost side swiping you.
Your heart continues to pound and the last thing you see is the Corvette's license plate that reads: "HALF ASS." You have just become an innocent victim of road rage. A question people may ask is: What is the difference between road rage and aggressive driving? "Road rage is simply uncontrolled anger that results in violence on the road and is a criminal behavior. Aggressive driving includes tailgating, sudden lane changes, and speeding, altogether or in combination." (Rathbone 3). But the driver is in control and is not angry.
Aggressive driving is dangerous and are traffic offenses, but it is not criminal behavior. Road rage is a major problem in the United States, it causes accidents, anger, fear, and danger to our roadways everyday. Most people have road rage when they are in a hurry to get where they need to be. Others may be said to have inherited this uncontrolled temper from their parents. Maybe some drivers think of their road rage as being nothing but a fun game that provides them with entertainment. A literary review, "Controlling Road Rage", prepared for The AAA Foundation for Traffic Study states: ."..
[research indicates] road rage is most likely to occur Friday afternoon, in peak travel times, and in fair weather. The surprisingly low number of incidents recorded during rainy, snowy and icy weather may reflect increased attention to roadway conditions and lowered expectations by the driver." However congestion present on the road increases the number of these incidents. This anger that these rogers bring to our roadways cause accidents in which many cases turn out to be fatalities. When someone gets cut off while driving it shows the lack of responsibility they actually have.
Stress is also related to these drivers who take out their anger on others. Such aggression involves shouting obscenities, and vulgar expressions that include the ever so popular middle finger. They risk others lives as well as their own. The road rage motorist is obviously not aware of the tickets and fines they will receive because of their catastrophic driving habit. Road rage and aggressive driving may be similar to some, however the characteristics of the two are in fact different.
"In our state of Florida police use a wide variety of non-traditional vehicles and a plain clothes officer's to record violations with a radar unit and to relay information to patrol vehicles in the area" (Rathbone 15). The result of a survey showed that the time of day which road rage is at it's greatest is 25% during the 4: 00 to 6: 00 pm travel peak. Watch out for these rogers at all times, they are a threat to you, your family, and anyone else on the road. Rogers can be spotted by expressing drastic driving habits or not using any common sense. Think about your driving behaviors and how they may impact others on the road, maybe you are an unsafe menace behind the wheel? Defensive driving is how most people refer themselves to so they are not categorized as a roger. The art of defensive driving is simply being aware of all matters that exist on the highways.
Being alert and attentive helps get you places faster and with less alarming situations. Defensive driving does not rise to the level of criminal behavior. In fact, some consider it to be a solution to the road rage disorder. Driving defensively helps others as well. It keeps traffic from developing and the overall flow of vehicles cause less accidents. Sometimes others may see defensive driving as being dangerous, but this style of driving decreases the feud that many drivers face with each other everyday.
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety provides public service announcements that not only want to put a stop to road rage, but aggressive driving too. Aggressive driving has many different aspects you can look at. Tailgating, changing lanes when close to another vehicle, or just speeding can all be seen as aggressive driving. Aggressive behavior is a controlled behavior which does not include the anger and attitude that road rage comes with. With enforcement from police, aggressive driving is sometimes opposed with the idea that it is not the safest technique to use while operating a vehicle. Together road rage can be ceased if everyone could learn to control their attitude and not bring their problems to our roadways, defensive driving is one safe way to approach this menace to our lives on the road.
The cure for the common roger. What may the cure for, road rage which some call a disease, be? Anger management would help many who suffer with expressing their negative feelings to others not only on the road but in their everyday life. Self-help methods using media attention help drivers increase their driving awareness, reduce stress, and avoid road rage. These methods include tapes, books, seminars, classes in anger management, surveys and self test (Rathbone 21). Think about the families and other important lives that are on the roads today.
It is almost not safe to go drive anymore because of some crazy people that somehow or another passed their driving test. The effectiveness that is most present on our roadways is the increase in patrol activity and punishment for rogers rather than improved driving behavior. Many people have more to deal with on the road then to put up with the uncontrolled attitude of a dangerous driver. Such as problems with work or driving an old slow car. I believe I am a very defensive driver.
When I am behind the wheel I may do drastic maneuvers but I feel I do not put others in danger. For example, when I pulled out onto the highway the other day, the car I pulled out in front of was not close at all. The elderly woman raced up on my bumper as if she was trying to startle me because of my quick movement onto the road. As she pulled up beside me all I saw was her mouth moving and fist waving. She swerved back and forth while in her lane trying to get me to swerve as well. I just laughed at her stupid remarks and motions as her old Buick regal slowly passed me.
It's incidents like that which cause controversies on the road all the time. Although I approve of aggressive driving it can also cause others to have road rage. Then there are those people who are just plain crazy. Another personal experience of mine involves a crazy person flying up from behind on I-75 and passing me on the right shoulder, exceeding speeds above 90. That incident could of been a fatal one for me and others sharing the freeway. My dad is from New York and his rage on the road gets crazy sometimes.
He is not a true road roger because I have not seen that bad of an attitude from him, but he does have that Italian temper that I might have of inherited. somewhat. His style of driving can be referred to as aggressive. I have found the best solution to control my behavior while driving is to make myself comfortable in my vehicle and relax. If som one you know has problem with speeding, or holds aggression while driving, then help provide them with a solution and you may save someone's life. To control road rage around your area get involved with programs such as a AAA driving school and you may help prevent this enrage behavior present on our roads.
Police are cracking down in many areas to reduce the ever so popular "roger." Accidents, fatalities, and tickets are all results of road rage and poor driving skills. Help others understand that patience is a virtue, especially when relating to the safety of others as well as yourself.