Road rage: How to spot aggressive drivers in CA

Aggressive motorists engage in dangerous driving behaviors which can put other drivers' lives in danger.

The number of aggressive drivers on California roadways and throughout the United States is alarming. According to AAA, more than 80 percent of drivers in the country have admitted to driving in an aggressive fashion. Whether navigating through rush-hour traffic or speeding to an important meeting, aggressive driving can have devastating consequences. Speeding, a common type of aggressive driving behavior, is involved in more than 33 percent of fatal car accidents in the U.S. Furthermore, at least one form of aggressive driving is involved in 56 percent of all deadly traffic collisions. People should know how to spot the signs of road rage in order to keep themselves and others safe on the street.

Identifying the signs of road rage

While some people may consider erratic lane changing and following too closely to be the primary forms of aggressive driving, there are several types of road rage behavior. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, road rage is considered a combination of dangerous driving behaviors. These include the following:

· Passing cars in areas that are prohibited.

· Constant horn honking.

· Yelling obscenities or displaying offensive hand gestures.

· Failure to yield to another's right of way.

· Failure to obey traffic lights or road signs.

· Speeding and/or racing other vehicles.

Driver negligence can cause serious harm to pedestrians, bicyclists, motorcyclists and other drivers. In some cases, a car accident caused by an aggressive driver can result in long-term injuries, such as traumatic brain damage, paralysis, nerve damage, broken bones and lost limbs. Some people may be unable to return to work as they recover from their injuries or may be unable to work permanently as a result of the damage.

What to do

Law enforcement officers suggest drivers stay away from aggressive drivers. People should avoid eye contact and never engage an aggressive driver by returning hand gestures or comments. Instead, motorists should contact law enforcement and tell them the location of the negligent driver. California, as well as several other states in the nation, have legislation prohibiting aggressive driving and penalizing those who engage in these behaviors.

How an attorney can help

People who have been injured in a serious car accident may be eligible for compensation for their medical expenses, lost wages from work, property damage and emotional trauma. It can be difficult putting the pieces back together after experiencing a devastating collision. A personal injury attorney may be helpful in answering your questions, as well as looking at your legal options.