You hear a lot about distracted driving causing accidents, and it’s true that texting and other forms of distraction are responsible for many motorist injuries and deaths. Aggressive driving, on the other hand, does not receive as much attention, but can be just as deadly.
When you’re driving down an Oakland highway with traffic flowing freely, try driving the speed limit; you’ll probably find that just about every other driver is whizzing by you. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that speeding is a contributing factor in nearly a third of the fatal accidents that occur on our nation’s roads.
Of course, speeding is not the only dangerous behavior some drivers engage in. Aggressive driving behaviors like following too closely or making improper lane changes can also cause or contribute to accidents.
Aggressive driving is neither highly policed nor highly publicized, but it has the potential to cause great harm. Speeding causes drivers to have less reaction time to try to avoid accidents, and also increases the energy in a car crash, potentially leading to more serious injuries or even causing deaths. Likewise, following closely leaves little time for drivers to react to unexpected conditions, and cutting people off can be alarming and dangerous for other drivers.
If a driver causes a car accident through aggressive driving, victims may be able to hold the driver or his or her insurer accountable for resulting damages. Driving safely is not just a matter of common courtesy, it is a duty of everyone who operates a motor vehicle.
Source: The Oakland Press, Oakland County police agencies targeting aggressive drivers along I-75, John Turk, June 12, 2013