Road rage and aggressive driving behaviors can be dangerous to other motorists on the road.

Drivers in Tennessee know that being stuck in heavy traffic on the freeway can be nerve wracking. Motorists may also find it annoying when a driver pulls out in front of them or someone is going extremely slow in the fast lane. For a number of people, certain driving situations can grate on their nerves and in some cases, a seemingly pleasant person may turn into an aggressive driver. In fact, AAA reported that as many as 80 percent of drivers in the country agree that they have had an episode of road rage within the last year.

Aggressive drivers show a complete disregard for others, and can be extremely dangerous to others on the road. When a driver's aggression escalates, it may transform into road rage, which may then involve acts of violence.

Identifying aggressive behaviors

Motorists should always drive defensively and remain on the lookout for other drivers' aggressive driving behaviors. According to NBC News, these behaviors may include the following:

  • Excessive honking
  • Speeding
  • Tailgating or driving bumper-to-bumper
  • Yelling and using obscene gestures
  • Quick lane changes and cutting off other drivers
  • Blocking drivers from making lane changes

A driver with road rage may go as far as to follow someone to their house and continue to torment or threaten them.

How to react

Officers advise people who are being followed by an aggressive driver to slow down, call law enforcement and give them a complete description of the vehicle. The victim should avoid engaging in a verbal confrontation with the other driver. Furthermore, motorists should continue to keep their eyes on the road and refrain from looking at the angry driver.

Road rage facts

While 11 states in the nation have laws against aggressive drivers, Tennessee has yet to pass legislation penalizing enraged motorists. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that approximately seven million car accidents a year involve aggressive driving and a minimum of 15,000 fatal auto collisions are caused by angry and forceful motorists. The true number, however, remains unknown, as many cases of road rage go unreported.

Getting help when you need it

If you have become the victim of a road rage incident, you may have experienced emotional trauma, physical injuries and even property damage. You might have been forced to stay home from work and may have lost wages while you recovered from the incident. Aggressive drivers should be held accountable for their reckless actions. You may want to seek the counsel of a personal injury attorney in Tennessee regarding your legal rights and options.