Why Do Drivers Lose Their Cool Behind The Wheel?
In the heat of summer, some drivers on the road have a short fuse. Others are running out of patience at the pumps, waiting to get fuel.
Seventy-eight percent of drivers surveyed by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety have shown aggressive behavior behind the wheel, according to the group's latest data.
Commonly known as "road rage," these expressions of frustration can include seeking confrontation or racing with other drivers, tailgating, failing to observe signs, sudden lane changes, honking and yelling.
Much of the research on aggressive driving nationwide is discretionary or self-reported, and Texas only tracks incidents in which a crash occurs. How can dangerous driving behavior be better addressed?
Local authorities typically identify these issues on a case-by-case basis, but are taking preventative measures.
"We have unmarked 'aggressive driver' police vehicles that are used along the roadways to capture drivers who are driving in ways that might induce a confrontation on the roadway," Sergeant Jesse Salame of the San Antonio Police Department said in a statement to TPR News.
"We hope that by being out there and actively looking for these behaviors, we can prevent some of the dangerous and avoidable outcomes that stem from people losing their cool on the roadways."
How else can San Antonio maintain safer streets and highways in regards to aggressive driving? Why do people act differently behind the wheel?
With delays in fuel delivery causing long lines for gas statewide, how can drivers avoid aggression in times of scarcity?
- Alan Lipman, psychologist, founder and director of the Center for the Study of Violence in Washington, D.C.
- Laura Lopez, public information officer for TxDOT San Antonio branch
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