Trooper Tips: Avoiding Road Rage

By TROOPER GARY CUTLER

Colorado State Patrol

RBC | This month’s topic is very important in my mind.  We are seeing an increase in road rage, not only in our state, but across the United States.  The reason road rage starts, varies from situation to situation, but it needs to be taken seriously, because it can be deadly in the end.

I want all of you to be careful when driving the roadways of Colorado.  It seems with the increase of traffic and the inevitable gridlock we have when traveling on weekends and holidays, tempers are rising quicker than ever.

Here’s a few tips to avoid getting caught up in a road rage incident with another driver.  The first is when driving on roads 65 mph or more, stay out of the furthest left lane.  It is state law, and when you have drivers that seem to be in a giant hurry, they won’t be right on your bumper.  By staying in the left lane it elevates the possibility of a crash and the chance the aggressive driver will get mad and try to do something dangerous.

If you have someone following too closely and they start to really try to crowd you, safely get out of that lane or to the shoulder of the roadway.  Let them pass, and then take your time getting back on the roadway.  If the other driver is intent on trying to get you to stop, call 911, or *CSP to get emergency help.  The dispatchers will let you know what you should do next.

Never try to follow the other driver; this could provoke them to have a confrontation.  Always remember, the best course of action is to disengage as soon as safely possible.

Be courteous to other drivers, and they should be courteous to you.  Use your blinker, let others in your lane, and be light with the horn.  Don’t let someone else’s anger on the roadway get you caught up in it. Get to where you are going safely.

Finally, give yourself plenty of time to get where you are going.  Plan that there will be a delay, so by leaving early, the pressure is off.  Colorado is beautiful in the summertime.  Slow down and enjoy it, and let’s see if we can get the rest to do the same.

As always, safe travels!

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