To prevent road rage—and promote road kindness—AAA offers some helpful tips.
If you've ever felt frustrated by other drivers on the road, you're not alone. According to a recent AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety study, nearly 80 percent of American drivers experienced anger, aggression, or road rage during the past year—and millions acted on those feelings.
"Frustration and anger are normal emotions, and it's fine to experience them," says Jake Nelson, AAA director of traffic safety advocacy and research. "But we can control how we act, both in our everyday lives and behind the wheel."
To prevent road rage—and promote road kindness—Nelson has several tips. First, don't offend. Avoid making unnecessary maneuvers that will cause another driver to change speed or direction. If an aggressive driver targets you, do not respond with eye contact or gestures, and maintain space around your vehicle.
Strive to be tolerant and forgiving: It's unlikely that another driver's actions are personal. Finally, allow ample time to reach your destination. You can spare a moment to let pedestrians cross the street, to alternate at merge lanes, and to steer carefully around cyclists—in short, to be the kind driver you've always wanted to be.
This article was first published in Winter 2018. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.