Driving is an involving activity and people experience many negative emotions especially if they are experiencing a traffic jam or if other drivers are acting inconsiderately. This might result in road rage, a condition caused by annoyance and that often results in aggression on the road. Road rage increases the probability of a driver committing traffic offences or even risking the lives of other road users. Stricter laws should therefore be passed to discourage people from engaging in road rage.
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Road rage causes aggressive driving which may result in fatal accidents. When a driver experiences road rage, he/she may engage in reckless driving in an effort to retaliate or frustrate the other driver. Some of these aggressive driving includes following other vehicles too closely and switching lanes at random and without indicating.
Some drivers drive at excessive speeds and ignore stoplights because of road rage. Such behaviour increases the likelihood of accidents being caused by the driver who has road rage. Media reports reveal that the number of accidents caused by road rage is on the increase. This accidents are not only restricted to the drivers on the road. The lives of people not directly involved in the confrontation such as cyclists and pedestrians are also jeopardized by road rage.
Road rage leads to distractions on the road as the driver focuses on activities such as verbal arguments with other drivers. In some instances of road rage, drivers engage each other in verbal insults or make rude hand gestures at each other. I have seen drivers stick their hands outside their windows as they engage other drivers in intense arguments.
As they are doing this, their attention is not on the road. This is an important consideration since drivers are required to demonstrate high levels of alertness to the road and their surroundings at all times. This distraction caused by road rage increases the chances of causing an accident as the drivers focus less on the road.
Road rage can cause physical fights between drivers with bad results. The high frustration experienced during road rage can cause drivers to physically attack each other. Because of the great anger felt, the physical violence can lead to severe consequences. For example, there are cases where the injuries inflicted on a driver lead to assault charges being made against the aggressive driver. A driver therefore risks having a criminal record because of damages inflicted because of road rage.
In addition to the annoyance caused to other road users, road rage causes disturbance to businesses that are near the road. Road rage is often characterized by loud yelling by the drivers involved. Other drivers engage in unnecessary honking in an attempt to get the attention of the other drivers or to annoy them.
I have encountered this disruption at my favourite cafe, which happens to be near a road. The noise caused because of road rage often spoils the atmosphere at the cafe. Road rage disrupts the activities of nearby businesses, which have to deal with all the noise being generated.
Increases in the cases of road rage have made our roads more unsafe than they were in the past. This paper has argued that stricter laws should be put in place to help discourage this behaviour. To support this claim, a discussion of some of the negative causes of road rage has been made. Every safety-minded citizen should support strict legislation against road rage in order to make the roads safe for everyone.