Have you ever witnessed road rage – or experienced it yourself? If so, you are not alone. In fact, about 78% of drivers around the country claim to have engaged in aggressive driving at least once in the past 12 months.
While getting a little heated behind the wheel may not seem like that big of a deal, you should consider some statistics of road rage-related accidents.
- In 2020, 56% of all fatal accidents involved road rage.
- More than 50% of drivers react aggressively when facing road rage.
- In 2021, 131 individuals were fatally shot due to cases of road rage.
In New York, cases of road rage are commonplace due to the busy roads and constant congestion on some roads and highways.
One way to combat road rage-related accidents is to learn more about it. If you are involved with a driver experiencing road rage, you may be able to receive compensation, and our legal team at The Law Office of Joseph J. Perrini, III can help.
Road Rage Defined
In New York, road rage is defined as a hostile, angry state that can escalate and lead to criminal actions or attempted violent actions caused by driving a vehicle. Road rage also includes any behavior to provoke others or cause fear.
What Factors Lead to Cases of Road Rage
Many factors can cause road rage. Some of the most common include the following:
- Traffic delays: Issues like looking for a parking space, sitting at stop lights, heavy traffic, and waiting for passengers can increase driver frustration and anger.
- Running late: Drivers who are running late for an appointment or meeting may become impatient.
- Learned behavior or habits: For some people, aggressive driving and road rage are considered “normal.”
- Disregard for the law and others: Sometimes, drivers do not believe the rules apply to them.
- Anonymity: If a driver believes they will not see another driver again, they may be more willing to engage in risky actions such as rude gestures, excess honking, cutting off other drivers, or tailgating.
Why is New York Road Rage so Risky?
Cases of road rage threaten public safety. This is because when someone drives in an enraged or aggressive state, it increases the likelihood of an accident. Usually, cases of road rage involve an act that includes the goal of intimidating or harming someone. It can also include harmful acts.
Cases of road rage are common when emotions are involved in unfavorable driving situations. When this happens, aggressive driving behaviors like the following will occur:
- Flashing headlights
- Cursing at other drivers or making an obscene or offensive signal
- Tailgating another driver for long amounts of time
- Intentionally ramming another vehicle
- Erratic or dangerous lane changes
- Driving off the road
- Showing a weapon to intimidate other drivers
- Aggressive and continual honking
- Chasing another driver at high rates of speed
If you are on the receiving end of these aggressive driving actions, they can be scary and stressful.
What to Do if You Are Involved in a Road Rage Accident in NY
Road rage often leads to accidents. Knowing how to respond to these situations can help increase your safety and ability to build a winning lawsuit for compensation. If you are involved in a road rage accident, take the following steps:
Move Somewhere Safe
Your safety is the most important factor. The first thing you should do after a road rage accident is to go somewhere safe. Adrenaline may cause someone to retaliate or panic; however, you can stay calm, process the situation, and figure out the best way to deal with the angry individual.
Contact the Police
After being in a road rage car accident, you need to contact the police to file an official report. You can also request emergency medical services if you are injured. Sometimes, an aggressive driver may attempt to coerce or dissuade you from contacting the police; however, doing so helps you protect your safety and ability to recover compensation.
While you wait for the police to arrive, try to exchange information with the other driver. Sometimes, aggressive drivers will not cooperate and provide you with this information. If this happens, do not press the issue. When the police arrive, they can acquire this information and include it in the report that you can receive a copy of.
Along with getting contact information from the other people involved in your accident, you should also get this information from anyone who saw what happened. Witness testimonies can help back up your version of events.
Document the Scene
If you can, take photos and video footage of the scene of the accident. Be sure to capture all vehicle damage and injuries. If you cannot do this, call our office. We can come to the scene to help preserve evidence that will help show what type of damages you are entitled to .
While you document the accident scene, be sure to take photos of any debris around the scene, tire tracks, signage, and anything else that may help your case.
Seek Immediate Medical Treatment
Even if you feel fine after an accident, it is recommended that you seek medical treatment. Some injuries can take time to appear and if you wait to seek medical treatment they may become worse and cause more issues.
Let Car Accident Lawyers in Long Island Help with Your Road Rage Accident Case
Being involved in an accident with an aggressive driver or one who is engaging in road rage can be scary. However, in these situations, you have legal rights. Our legal team at The Law Office of Joseph J. Perrini, III, can help protect your rights and ensure you recover the compensation you are entitled to. Call our office today to schedule a free consultation.