Don’t Fall Prey to Road Rage

Anyone who commutes to and from work knows how easily traffic can turn into an exercise in frustration. As tempting as it is to retaliate for rude driving, don’t make a bad situation worse. Follow these safety rules:

• Don’t escalate aggression. That means don’t tailgate a driver who tailgated you first or flip the bird to a rude driver. Responding to the road bullies may only increase hostilities.

• Don’t make eye contact. You really just want to let a driver know that they’ve been driving like an idiot, so as you pass the car, you give the driver a look that lets them know you’re not happy. Remember that you don’t know a thing about that driver or what frame of mind they’re in. Don’t risk a confrontation.

• If you’re being followed by a hostile driver, don’t go home. Drive instead to a public place like a gas station or restaurant. Better yet, head to a police station if one is nearby. If you have a cell phone, call the police and report the driver.

• Never get out of your car. A confrontation at a stoplight is not worth risking violence. The other driver may have some kind of weapon. If the driver gets out of the car, lock your doors and close your window. If you can drive away, do so. If you have a cell phone, call the police.

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