Sometimes even those who are usually calm can turn into a crazed maniac when they get on the road and someone cuts them off. Road rage has varying levels of madness from a mutter under your breath to physically getting out of your car and hitting someone over the head.

People are going to make mistakes, but things aren’t always clear cut with accidents occurring simply by accident or by irresponsible behaviour like texting or drink driving while behind the wheel. When mistakes happen on our roads the results can be critical, but when road rage comes into play it can also have serious consequences.

angry businesswoman in car angry with another driver

This week we are discussing road rage and whether you have ever “flipped the bird” at another motorist, followed someone or hopped out of the car to tell them what for. Or have you been the target of an angry driver?

Do you think people feel a sense of entitlement when it comes to our roads or are there really that many bad drivers out there that road rage is unavoidable? Is road rage the result of people feeling as though they have been put at risk, or something else?

What are we going to give away this week? One lucky winner will receive a Colour Me Happy Noodle Box from Rainbow Designs, it’s packed with lollies! Participate by commenting below. The winners will  be contacted by email so make sure your address is current. Competition closes 14th February 2012 Midnight AEST. Australian residents only. Check back next Wednesday for a new weekly discussion.

7 thoughts on “DISCUSSION: Road Rage

  1. I am actually quite calm on the roads, if someone tail gates me I stand my ground, they can go around, my main pet hate is people that leave it to the last minute to turn into a turning lane or street!
    As for my hubby, well he’s another story, beeps, swerves around people and rolls down his window to yell abuse…following up with a slap and chastise from me! Most of the time I drive, just because if he is driving I can’t relax, sit there with my eyes closed 99% of the time!
    I think people need to learn how to relax, having roads, cars or bikes is a gift, not a right, too many people die on our roads just trying to get to places quickly, if they just took the time to get there in 1 piece the world would be a happier, calmer place.

  2. Driving has been around for over 100 years. Traffic snarls and peak hour parking lots have been around for at least 30 years. Road rage in Australia is a disease of the last 10 years. The symptoms: impatience and rudeness manifesting as flashing high beams and honking horns, leading up to verbal and gestural abuse, crashes and violence. The causes: certainly more people on roads that were substandard and inefficent 20 years ago doesn’t help. But more likely is the lack of control drivers feel in other parts of their lives. Behind the wheel people can control what happens. Their car becomes their world and they demand the space and respect for their rights they aren’t getting in other parts of their lives. The prognosis: unhappy. Car manufacturers are turning cars into little offices or private sitting rooms, little kingdoms people can control. Ugh! Multitasking might be good at the office (though I have my doubts) but it is dangerous on the road. People also need to understand what is an insult and worth a fight (eg. political erosion of rights) and what is not a personal slight and should be shrugged away (eg. another driver cutting in front of them).

    I hate driving on city roads. Country roads, with potholes, dangerous corners and even wildlife, are preferable. And I’d rather drive at midnight with the trucks and taxis, whose drivers steer with sense, not egos.

  3. I think people are getting way too impatient.
    I actually had a road rage issue yesterday because I was following the road rules. And yes, I didnt want to be stuck at the lights either but i wasn’t moving into a busy intersection until i knew i could get out of it.
    So i got tooted….and tooted…and tooted until 2 cars swerved out from behind me to go around through the intersection. That there was a very near miss at the day before. It’s almost a blind bend because you can’t really see where oncoming traffic is until the last second.

  4. I live and work in a relatively small area of Sydney and am absolutely gobsmacked at how many road rage incidents occur in this area. I too have experienced the wrath of (mind you) a P plate driver.
    This is how it went: There were two lanes and the left hand lane had to merge into the right hand lane. I was in the right hand lane and was ahead of this P plater, but they sped up to merge in front of me when there were no cars behind me????????????????? Naturally I had to slam my foot on the brakes, so I beeped her and she flipped ME the bird. I am 39 and have never had an accident, so I consider myself a pretty safe driver, and when I was learning to drive you always gave way to the lane you were merging into. Especially if there was no cars behind in the right lane.
    I just think that P plate drivers are too eager to get everywhere quickly at the cost of causing others accidents. I am not saying all P platers are the same but I have experienced quite a lot of this behaviour. I thought that they were making getting your license harder so that the younger ones are more prepared for Road Rules???
    I am loving the RTA ads on TV at the moment where a doctor is speaking and says, “get to the bbq a bit late, Or take a risk, speed and kill your family.
    I think there is something in that for all of us, dont you.

  5. It’s interesting l recently moved from inner city Melbourne, (where l always seemed impatient behind the wheel) to a country town (where everyone knows everyone else – really! just like Home And Away) and now l am so much more patient when driving.
    Firstly because there is such a thing as “country time” so drivers don’t care if they are holding people up by going 20km under the speed limit. Plus you are on a highway when driving to another town so you have to be alert for kangaroos on the road and you are driving at high speed on a single lane.
    But having said that………years ago when l first got my license l was being tailgated and the guy was beeping and beeping me to go……….finally we got to a straight street and he fully floored it past me……….my friend “flipped” him the bird.
    He slammed the brakes on, got out of his car……..l was reversing to get away from him……he ran to my side of the car and with full force banged on the window.
    Thank goodness the window didn’t break.
    He then jumped in his car and raced off.
    We were both gobsmacked…………dropped my friend off went home, told my mum and we both looked at the car window where the man’s hand print was still clearly visible.

  6. I was driving to work the other day, on a single lane, country-ish road, and the car ahead was doing 70 in an 80 zone. I kinda tailgated….where you drive up then pull back immediately….to try and prompt her to speed up. So she slows down to 65 Grrrrrrrr. We travelled 3 kms like this.

    We went up a hill and she speeds up to 80. Yeah the irony made me laugh too. Over the hill and she slows back down to 70. We hit the 100 zone and she slows way back down to 67. By this time I was enraged, traffic was building behind me and so yep I tailgated her……I left just enough braking space should she slam on the brakes at the blistering speed of 67 kms!.

    She held steady on 67 for another 1km or so until we reached the dual carriageway. When I sped up to 70kms to pass her, she looked across with this ‘I’m just an old lady and speed scares me and everyone tells me to slow down to make tailgaters stop so that’s what I do….. so please be nice to me’ look.

    I admit I screamed profanities in her direction and my 15 year old son informs me my face contorted so I looked like Bilbo Baggins when he saw Frodo had The Ring. His quote, not mine…

    I don’t condone tailgating or uttering profanities in front my child but if you are driving 33 kms under the speed limit, I’m sorry but you deserve it. Slowing down to stop tailgaters enrages them further when you are driving that far under the limit. We’re not talking a few kms here! If she is that nervous or whatever, perhaps she needs to turn in her licence.

    My 17 is a red p-plater and I have seen other drivers stirring him up, toying with him. Not all p-platers are bad and they don’t all drive like ratbags. And it’s not tougher to get a licence, it’s simply more difficult. In NSW they have to do 120 hours on the roads which is difficult to achieve timewise, not tough on the learner driver. Does that make sense?

    Anyway, that’s my rant over 🙂

  7. I try to remain calm even if someone cuts me off or does something stupid. It’s so easy to react and get angry, but safety should be first. We need to take it easy and be kind to each other.

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