Holiday travel, aggressive driving, increases risk of North Carolina car accidents

All too often you look in your rearview mirror while you are driving and you see a vehicle right on your back bumper. The next thing you know the impatient driver is pulling around passing you in the left lane and an oncoming vehicle is coming right at them.

Fear sets in because either the passing vehicle is going to clip your front bumper and cut you off or they are going to be in a head-on collision with another vehicle. As a result, all three drivers are forced to react to the situation and most times it isn’t the aggressive driver who adopts proper driving etiquette. It’s the defensive driver who often swerves or brakes abruptly for the convenience of the other driver to change lanes safely. Car accident attorneys in North Carolina often wonder what is the compelling force behind this kind of aggressive driving.
And yet it is often on display during the heavy holiday travel scene. Give yourself and others a break and allow plenty of time to reach your destination.

The Governors Highway Safety Association indicates that North Carolina is 1 of 14 states in the U.S. that has addressed aggressive driving.

Each state defines what they consider aggressive driving acts; usually at least two acts must take place. In North Carolina, you have to be speeding and driving carelessly (meaning with no regard for others safety) as well as be doing two of the following: tailgate, run a stop sign or red light, not yield the right of way or pass illegally.

There is a big difference between road rage and aggressive driving. When we are driving aggressively we are committing traffic offenses (speeding, running a stop sign, tailgating). Road rage is an assault, or a criminal act to another person or vehicle (crashing into a vehicle on purpose, using a jack handle to smash someone’s window) as a result of aggressive driving behavior.

WCNC reported earlier this year a road rage incident amongst teenagers. An argument between 5 teenagers in an SUV and the teenage driver of another vehicle escalated into gun fire when the lone teenage driver approached the group in the SUV. Luckily no one was seriously injured.

Don’t be a victim of road rage by taking this advice:

-Don’t ever confront an aggressive driver.

-Don’t make eye contact with a driver showing aggressive behavior.

-Never make a gesture back at them.

-Don’t block the path if you see someone driving too closely.

-Call the police if you feel you are in danger.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a car crash, contact the Carolina injury lawyers at Lee & Smith today for a free and confidential appointment. Call 800-887-1965. Representing all of North and South Carolina, including Charlotte, Raleigh and Winston-Salem.

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