Ask a Trooper: How to handle road rage?
Q: I read about a recent study by the AAA Foundation for traffic safety, found that nearly 80 percent of drivers expressed significant anger, aggression or road rage behind the wheel at least once in the previous year. How many "road rage" incide...
Q: I read about a recent study by the AAA Foundation for traffic safety, found that nearly 80 percent of drivers expressed significant anger, aggression or road rage behind the wheel at least once in the previous year. How many “road rage” incidents are reported to the State Patrol on a yearly basis?
A: Troopers respond to a number of calls on a daily basis based on driving conduct and many other issues and actions occurring on our highways. While we do not specifically track “road rage” incidents, I can provide statistics on the number of incidents related to driving conduct and other issues.
Driving Complaints: 57,465 (2015)
33,865 (2016 to-date)
Gun Pointing Incidents: 119 (2015)
76 (2016 to-date)
Signs of an aggressive driver:
• Ignore traffic signals
• Speed and tailgate
• Weave in and out of traffic
• Make improper lane changes frequently and abruptly
• Pass on the shoulder
• Make hand and facial gestures
• Scream, honk and flash lights.
If confronted by an aggressive driver, you should:
Get out of their way.
• Stay calm - reaching your destination safely is your goal.
• Do not challenge them.
• Avoid eye contact.
• Ignore gestures and don’t return them.
• Report aggressive driving (vehicle description, license number, location).
• Always buckle up to maintain proper seating position in case of abrupt driving maneuvers.
Report Aggressive Drivers:
Find a safe place to call 911
• Be prepared to provide location, vehicle description and license plate.
Sgt. Neil Dickenson is a regional public information officer with the Minnesota State Patrol. A portion of state statutes were used with permission from the Office of the Revisor of Statutes. If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Sgt. Neil Dickenson – Minnesota State Patrol at 1131 Mesaba Ave, Duluth, MN 55811. You can follow him on Twitter @MSPPIO_NE or reach him at email@example.com