wolterman conference room

A decade of friendly,



Home » Blog » Car Accident » Road Rage Car Accidents: What You Should Know?

Road Rage Car Accidents: What You Should Know?

Our Cincinnati Car Accident Lawyers at Wolterman Law Office Represent Victims of Road Rage Accidents

You never know what will cause another driver to become irate and take it out on other nearby drivers. Some motorists become increasingly angry and impatient the longer they are stuck in slow-moving traffic. Others have an extreme and overly aggressive response when another driver cuts them off or if they are stuck behind a motorist who is traveling too slowly. Either way, when these aggressive feelings escalate to road rage, this can quickly become hazardous. In addition to increasing the risk of a car accident, road rage accidents are more likely to result in substantial property damage, severe injuries, and fatalities. If you or someone you know has been seriously injured in a car accident involving road rage, it is highly recommended that you contact an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

What Is Road Rage?

Road rage occurs when a motorist becomes angry or frustrated and engages in intentionally dangerous behavior, including braking suddenly in front of another car, pulling up to another driver’s bumper with the intent of intimidating the other driver, cutting off another driver, using obscene gestures and threats, and chasing another vehicle, causing it to drive off the road. While some motorists may simply be quick to react negatively and aggressively, road rage is usually caused by fatigue, heavy traffic, running late, pre-existing stress, or already feeling angry or upset about something else. Unfortunately, it is one of the top causes of car accidents in the United States. Yet, this type of behavior and the resulting accidents are largely preventable if motorists obey the rules of the road and avoid taking their frustrations out on other drivers.

How Is Road Rage Different From Aggressive or Reckless Driving?

There are aspects of road rage similar to aggressive or reckless driving, yet there are distinct differences. For example, while aggressive driving is the act of driving a vehicle with a conscious and intentional disregard for other people’s safety, road rage is a subset that involves intense anger and frustration. It may include behaviors ranging from intense verbal altercations to physical fights and damage to the vehicle. In extreme cases, road rage can lead to criminal charges for physical assault and attempted murder. Ultimately, all acts of road rage are likely considered aggressive or reckless driving, whereas not all reckless driving is considered road rage.

What Impact Does Road Rage Have on a Motorist’s Driving Skills?

Any type of driving behavior that causes you to lose your patience, engage in unsafe behavior, or jeopardize the safety of others can increase the risk of a severe car accident. A recent study found that nearly 90 percent of drivers admit to engaging in aggressive driving behaviors when behind the wheel, including honking, tailgating, and acting rude or hostile towards other drivers. Researchers also found that anger can have the following impact on the way that you drive:

  • Your attention is taken away from the road, making it difficult to focus on what you are doing.
  • Your perception is affected.
  • There is an interruption of informal processing.
  • There is a negative impact on your overall driving performance.

Why Are Road Rage Accidents More Severe?

In addition to road rage increasing the risk of serious car accidents, the resulting accidents tend to be more severe. The main reason is that motorists experiencing road rage often drive well over the posted speed limit at the time of the accident. When a car is speeding, the impact force during the collision is severe. In addition, if the driver fails to check their blind spot, misses a stop sign, or misjudges another car’s speed, they will have to slam their brakes to avoid a crash. If they are speeding, avoiding an accident makes it much more difficult.

How Can I Avoid a Car Accident Caused by Road Rage?

If you are driving on a busy highway and you encounter a motorist who is driving extremely aggressively, there are proactive steps you can take to de-escalate the situation and avoid engaging with the other driver, including the following:

  • Stay calm. If you notice an aggressive driver in the vicinity, the best thing to do is remain calm and avoid making the situation worse by antagonizing or provoking the other driver.
  • Move away. As soon as you can, put distance between you and the other driver. Slow down, move into another lane, or exit the highway, particularly if you feel unsafe. If you are able to do so, try to get the license plate number and a general description of the other driver. Avoid eye contact if at all possible.
  • Do not stop. Avoid stopping on the side of the road or in a parking lot, as the other driver may interpret this as a sign that you are looking for a confrontation. If the other driver is following you, do not go home. Drive to the closest police station.
  • Call 911. If your safety is threatened, call 911 and give the operator the other motorist’s license plate. Then, try to drive to a safe, well-lit, populated place or to a police station.

What If I Am Partly to Blame for a Road Rage Accident?

In most cases, a road rage accident is the fault of the person driving aggressively. However, if you were partly to blame, you may still recover damages, but the percentage of your share of liability will reduce the total recovery. In addition, if you are found to be more than 50 percent liable, you will likely be unable to recover any damages. An experienced car accident lawyer will assist you with this process and protect your legal rights.

Our Cincinnati Car Accident Lawyers at Wolterman Law Office Represent Victims of Road Rage Accidents

If you or a loved one was seriously injured in a road rage car accident, do not hesitate to contact our Cincinnati car accident lawyers at Wolterman Law Office. We will review the details of your case. To schedule a free, confidential consultation, call us today at 513-488-1135 or contact us online. Located in Loveland, Ohio, we serve clients in Hamilton County, Fairfield, Norwood, and Forest Park.