The morning or evening commute can be a hassle at times, especially if traffic is slow moving or if you are frustrated about something that happened at home or at work. Still, we must keep our emotions in check when behind the wheel because anger can easily lead to aggressive driving or even road rage.
The difference between aggressive driving and road rage
A person is driving aggressively if, on purpose and with ill intent or disregard for the well-being of others, they engage in unsafe driving practices. For example, if you are driving above the posted speed limit in congested traffic, this could constitute aggressive driving as can tailgating or cutting other drivers off. Running red lights and not allowing others to pass you are also common examples of aggressive driving.
Road rage is similar to aggressive driving, but it is more extreme and generally includes acts of anger. For example, if you are swearing at other drivers or flipping them off, this could constitute road rage. If you purposely strike another motorist, sideswipe another motorist or force a motorist off the road, this could also constitute road rage.
What can you do if you are struck by an aggressive driver?
If you are struck by an aggressive driver, do not respond with anger. This might only escalate the situation.
Pull over somewhere safe, if you can, and call the police if necessary. If you are injured, seek medical attention.
Aggressive driving could be considered an act of negligence. All motorists are bound by a duty of care to operate their vehicles safely. If an aggressive driver strikes you, this could be considered a breach of their duty of care. If the breach both actually and proximately caused your injuries, this may satisfy the elements of negligence and could form the basis of a personal injury lawsuit.
It is easy to get frustrated by the acts of other drivers, especially if you are rushed or upset. Still, you must stay calm and focus on safe driving. Aggressive driving and road rage can easily lead to motor vehicle accidents that could have been avoided. If you were struck by an aggressive driver, you can bring your situation to the attention of an attorney who can help you assess what steps to take next.