Road rage is rampant in our communities.  Webster defines road rage  as “violent anger caused by the stress and frustration involved in driving a motor vehicle in difficult conditions.” The trusted resource goes on to explain that the anger is usually provoked by another driver’s irritating action.

The most common reasons for road rage include perceived slights, improper road etiquette, impatience, lack of consideration, and surprisingly – bumper stickers.

Personal space

Some of the most patient people have short fuses when it comes to driving.  Recent studies conducted by scientists at Colorado State University and published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology indicate that the Americans have territorial attitudes when it comes to the road.

The studies concluded that humans have a strong sense of personal space and feel protective of their ‘personal space bubble,’ so it only makes sense that these feelings would carry over into their driving habits.

Cars are an extension of personal space and territorialism.  When drivers feel that their territory has been invaded, they react by flashing their lights or with the honk of a horn.

Examples of precursors to road rage include:

  • Excessive honking
  • Yelling or cursing
  • Flashing headlights
  • Hand gestures

Bumper stickers 

Drivers who choose to customize their vehicles with stickers, quotes, political opinions and other displays of their personalities are more prone to be accosted by road bullies and ragers than fellow drivers who do not have bumper stickers on their cars, according to the Colorado State University research.  Recent events like the video capture of a road rage incident in West Monroe illustrate the dangers posed to all citizens by road ragers.

Drivers of all ages, genders – throughout Monroe and Ouachita Parish – can experience frustration and impatience while immersed in a traffic jam, road construction or the poor driving habits of their neighbors.  But when impatience becomes aggression and bullying, the situation quickly escalates to road rage.

Studies like the one performed by AAA found that road rage was responsible for more than 12,610 injuries and 210+ deaths from 1990 to 1996.  The study showed a sharp increase – more than 7 percent per year – from previous years.

AAA projects that injuries from road rage incidents will increase to exceed 25,000 – as well as an estimated 370 deaths – in the coming years.  Those statistics include only the documented cases of rage, the actual numbers may be far higher as many road rage incidents, especially those that do not lead to injury, go unrecorded.

Next steps

Campbell, House, & Cummins has a team of qualified personal injury lawyers with experience in a wide range of legal areas.  They have the skill and the legal knowledge to help you fight for your rights. They stand beside you every step of the way –  to help you get the positive results you deserve. Call 318- 855-0285 to schedule a free case evaluation.

Avoiding ragers

With crowded roadways, it can be difficult to avoid incidents of road rage.  But if you see any of the following signs, do not approach these drivers – use these tips to avoid unstable drivers who may be capable of road rage:

  • Brake checking
  • Tailgating
  • Pursuit of another driver after being cut-off
  • Flashing or menacing another driver with a firearm
  • Deliberately squeezing out or driving another vehicle off the road

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car or truck crash and you believe that you are a victim of road rage, please contact personal injury lawyer Wade L. House at Campbell, House & Cummins.  Call 318-855-0285 to arrange your free consultation.


Campbell, House, & Cummins

1815 Roselawn Ave

Monroe, LA 71201