What are some of the better ways on how to deal with a driver with road rage?

puertorioninja5

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 14, 2012
23
0
Alabama
I recently just got my license, but have actually been driving for well over 2 years now (I'm 17) and around the metro area for Huntsville, AL, I consistently travel on Highway 231/431 aka Memorial Parkway, most likely the busiest road in the entire state if not I-65 in Birmingham.

Well I recently just came back after a 3-night tour of Nashville, TN and driving around Nashville compared to Huntsville is just a night and day experience even with the increased traffic, even on the Interstates! On the Parkway in Huntsville, 8 times out of 10, I encounter someone who constantly cuts me off and oh trust me, they hear about it haha. People constantly ride up on my ass in Huntsville, they always switch lanes without using their indicators, and one time when I honked my horn, a guy tailgated me for miles and pulled up beside me and threw beer cans at my car while shouting at me. I've driven on highways all over Alabama and Tennessee and it constantly baffles me that people lack common knowledge about driving, especially on major roadways.

I'm a guy that is always calm but a little aggressive on the road, but it got me thinking - what are some good ways to deal with another driver with road rage? What are some ways to deal with an angry driver without having to break into a fight?
 

Shrink

macrumors G3
Feb 26, 2011
8,914
1,596
New England, USA
I recently just got my license, but have actually been driving for well over 2 years now (I'm 17) and around the metro area for Huntsville, AL, I consistently travel on Highway 231/431 aka Memorial Parkway, most likely the busiest road in the entire state if not I-65 in Birmingham.

Well I recently just came back after a 3-night tour of Nashville, TN and driving around Nashville compared to Huntsville is just a night and day experience even with the increased traffic, even on the Interstates! On the Parkway in Huntsville, 8 times out of 10, I encounter someone who constantly cuts me off and oh trust me, they hear about it haha. People constantly ride up on my ass in Huntsville, they always switch lanes without using their indicators, and one time when I honked my horn, a guy tailgated me for miles and pulled up beside me and threw beer cans at my car while shouting at me. I've driven on highways all over Alabama and Tennessee and it constantly baffles me that people lack common knowledge about driving, especially on major roadways.

I'm a guy that is always calm but a little aggressive on the road, but it got me thinking - what are some good ways to deal with another driver with road rage? What are some ways to deal with an angry driver without having to break into a fight?
Only one way to deal with guys like that...get up in their face, especially if they have a weapon.

They'll always back down, don't worry!

Trust me...

Really...



:rolleyes:
 

rick snagwell

macrumors 68040
Feb 12, 2011
3,729
93
oceanside, ca
i have had a little road rage in the past, and the thing that makes it worse IMO is too ignore it. i hate it and it drives me more crazy. i would suggest getting off the freeway or turn on the next street. and of course if you are being followed...have LE intervene.
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
24,983
7,927
Detroit
Probably best to just pull off to the side and let them go around. Don't engage their aggressive behavior with more aggressive behavior.
 

jknight8907

macrumors 6502a
Jun 14, 2004
799
41
Hudson Valley NY
A good start would be to lay off the horn. Just let them go about their business, whether they cut you off or not. Honking or 'gesturing' at them is what causes the rage. Otherwise they would just keep on rolling.
 

firedept

macrumors 603
Jul 8, 2011
5,606
454
Somewhere!
There really is no definitive answer to your question. You can try to avoid it at all cost which is probably the best thing to do, but there is always going to be that one a$$ that is going to follow and take it to the next level.

Having been a firefighter for 10 years and currently a part-time EMT, I see the end result of road rage to many times. And it is usually not good. Either for the raging party or the receiver.

If I make a mistake driving, say accidentally cutting someone off, I am the first to apologize to the other driver. This usually diffuses a situation pretty quick no matter how much you have pi$$ed that other driver off. If they are the offender, I just leave it be, thinking to myself what an a$$ they are and one day I may be the EMT standing over them with their life depending on me.

Best advice I can offer, drive carefully, avoid confrontation, apologize even if it is not your fault. If someone tries to confront you, try to leave the area. Road rage usually never ends well.
 

thedeejay

macrumors 65816
Aug 16, 2012
1,338
46
Toronto, Canada.
Must be...talks like a native!
Not to be confused with a NY accent: Bawston. ��
On topic ple...just kidding don't kill me :p

There really is no definitive answer to your question. You can try to avoid it at all cost which is probably the best thing to do, but there is always going to be that one a$$ that is going to follow and take it to the next level.

Having been a firefighter for 10 years and currently a part-time EMT, I see the end result of road rage to many times. And it is usually not good. Either for the raging party or the receiver.

If I make a mistake driving, say accidentally cutting someone off, I am the first to apologize to the other driver. This usually diffuses a situation pretty quick no matter how much you have pi$$ed that other driver off. If they are the offender, I just leave it be, thinking to myself what an a$$ they are and one day I may be the EMT standing over them with their life depending on me.

Best advice I can offer, drive carefully, avoid confrontation, apologize even if it is not your fault. If someone tries to confront you, try to leave the area. Road rage usually never ends well.
What firedept stated is a great idea. I actually do the opposite but I think it requires extreme patience and is not really a great idea either. Say someone is tailgaiting me or trying to piss me off I just slow down even further which could be bad because it could piss them off even more. In most cases they eventually overtake me after which I say "eh" and drive on :)
 

alent1234

macrumors 603
Jun 19, 2009
5,654
122
i see it in NYC too many times

just ignore it and in five minutes you will probably forget about it
 

Synchromesh

macrumors 6502a
Jul 15, 2009
578
48
SF
I drove in Boston for many years and can confirm - horrible drivers. SF was a breath of fresh air after that. In Boston, however, weapons are a rarity. Chances that someone will pull a piece out over road rage are pretty slim. In the South where OP drives I bet chances are much higher so I'd be careful about yelling at people. A drunk redneck with a shotgun is nobody's friend.
 

Roller

macrumors 68030
Jun 25, 2003
2,527
964
There really is no definitive answer to your question. You can try to avoid it at all cost which is probably the best thing to do, but there is always going to be that one a$$ that is going to follow and take it to the next level.

Having been a firefighter for 10 years and currently a part-time EMT, I see the end result of road rage to many times. And it is usually not good. Either for the raging party or the receiver.

If I make a mistake driving, say accidentally cutting someone off, I am the first to apologize to the other driver. This usually diffuses a situation pretty quick no matter how much you have pi$$ed that other driver off. If they are the offender, I just leave it be, thinking to myself what an a$$ they are and one day I may be the EMT standing over them with their life depending on me.

Best advice I can offer, drive carefully, avoid confrontation, apologize even if it is not your fault. If someone tries to confront you, try to leave the area. Road rage usually never ends well.
I agree with this. You never know when you're going to run across a driver who'll take it to the next level and follow you until you get out of your car, pull out a gun, or whatever. Like the OP, I find that drivers here in Birmingham (AL, not UK) rarely signal lane changes and sometimes not even turns, but they're not particularly aggressive. Like most places, we have our share of tailgaters - I just make sure I move over and let them pass, if I can. Nothing more satisfying than seeing them pulled over by a cop down the road. :)
 

960design

macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2012
2,820
832
Destin, FL
I'm a guy that is always calm but a little aggressive on the road, but it got me thinking - what are some good ways to deal with another driver with road rage? What are some ways to deal with an angry driver without having to break into a fight?
I've been driving almost 30 years now and rarely get the rage driver, I'm never that guy. Here's how I do it.
1) Keep a very large following distance. Seriously, being one inch from someones taillights or 300 feet really doesn't change your arrival time.
2) Drive 5 miles over the speed limit, exactly. DO NOT allow your speed to vary. This minor detail leads to most problems. If you constantly change speed due to inattentive driving it makes it more difficult for everyone else to anticipate your actions.
3) Don't honk. You don't YELL at slow or annoying strollers at the mall do you? Would it solve anything if someone honked at you?
4) Stay out of speeders way. They've spent an entire life surviving on poor decisions, you are not their life coach; plus they need to get to MacDonald's to make sure your coffee is ready.

Me: CDL A, EVOC, TacDriving
 

mr99

macrumors 6502a
Jan 8, 2014
520
44
I've been driving almost 30 years now and rarely get the rage driver, I'm never that guy. Here's how I do it.

1) Keep a very large following distance. Seriously, being one inch from someones taillights or 300 feet really doesn't change your arrival time.

2) Drive 5 miles over the speed limit, exactly. DO NOT allow your speed to vary. This minor detail leads to most problems. If you constantly change speed due to inattentive driving it makes it more difficult for everyone else to anticipate your actions.

3) Don't honk. You don't YELL at slow or annoying strollers at the mall do you? Would it solve anything if someone honked at you?

4) Stay out of speeders way. They've spent an entire life surviving on poor decisions, you are not their life coach; plus they need to get to MacDonald's to make sure your coffee is ready.



Me: CDL A, EVOC, TacDriving

I couldn't agree more with this post.