OMAHA, Nebraska. Road rage kills. While it is difficult to pin down exactly how many accidents and fatalities are caused by road rage every year, the Insurance Information Institute reports that between 2003 and 2007, 56 percent of deadly accidents could be linked back to road rage and aggressive driving. What are some actions linked to aggressive driving and road rage? According to the Insurance Information Institute, these actions include: speeding, tailgating, illegal passing (including driving on the shoulder or sidewalk), failing to yield, failing to obey traffic signals, and improper turns. These actions can be dangerous enough when two passenger vehicles are involved, but when they involve motorcyclists or bicyclists, the consequences can be tragic. Motorcyclists don’t have the protective chassis of a car. When they are struck by passenger vehicles or larger vehicles, riders are more likely to suffer serious or life-altering injuries.
Why does road rage or aggressive driving occur? According to the neuroscientist writing for the Independent, road rage is the product of our ancient brains at work. The brain has two systems by which it operates: the conscious “circuit” and the unconscious “circuit.” The conscious circuit allows us to plan ahead, get our work done, and make myriad decisions and critical thinking we perform in a week. The automatic circuits are older parts of the human brain, responsible for automatic and life-sustaining urges, like drinking and eating. When we feel threatened, this ancient part of the brain can be triggered. Driving is one of the times in modern life where we put ourselves daily in truly life-threatening situations. When drivers cut us off, break the rules, or encroach on our space, anger and road rage can be triggered. The ancient circuits in our brain that tell us to fight can fire.
While it might be impossible for us to completely prevent road rage from arising, we are completely capable of controlling our actions after road rage arises. How can we prevent ourselves from taking life-threatening actions? The key is to understand why road rage arises, and to take a deep breath, and pause before doing anything. Understand that when your safety feels threatened, when you feel insulted (if another driver yells or gives you the finger), if you feel that someone is breaking the rules of the road, or is invading your space (by cutting you off), the anger and violence circuits of the brain might get triggered. The solution is not to act, but to pause, and think. Invoke the conscious side of your brain and take actions that will increase your safety, not lower it.
But, what happens if you are hurt in an accident due to the aggressive actions of another driver? Motorcyclists are especially vulnerable, because when drivers change lanes improperly, speed, tailgate, or fail to yield to a motorcyclist, the consequence of a car accident can be far greater for the rider. Rensch & Rensch Law are motorcycle accident injury lawyers in Omaha, Nebraska who may be able to help you seek damages for your lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering if you have been hurt due to the aggressive actions of another driver. Our firm can help you seek damages from aggressive drivers and assist you with making an insurance claim, if needed. Visit us at Rensch & Rensch to learn more about how our motorcycle accident injury lawyers in Omaha, Nebraska can help you.
Rensch & Rensch Law
7602 Pacific Street,
Omaha, NE 68114