A recent study shows that one in seven Britons acknowledges experiencing road rage and a quarter of the UK population has been a victim of a physical attack or a threat from an angry driver.
The study also showed that British drivers are especially agitated on the congested roads found in cities and both men and women are equally inclined to get involved in aggressive roadside arguments. However, Scottish drivers are much calmer than their British counterparts, with 5% fewer drivers reporting threats, violence, obscene gestures and shouting.
Sue Longthorn, the managing director of the company that carried out the study said,” Road rage affects both genders and, sadly, doesn’t just manifest itself in shouting and gesticulating. Many of us will know someone who is mild mannered most of the time but who, inside the confines of their car, can become easily enraged by another driver’s often harmless actions. Driving can bring out the darker side of our personalities but it is not worth getting that upset and angry. It doesn’t achieve anything other than raising your blood pressure.”
The study revealed that 76% felt angry while driving, while 69% of men admitted to the same. But men have a higher tendency to vent their frustrations by shouting, making threats or by physical assault. Approximately 10% of men admitted to assaulting another motorist while 4% have vented their anger at vehicles. 8% have threatened violence in confrontations which came close to blows.
In contrast, 7% of women admitted to assault and 2% said that they have damaged a car, although men are more likely to be targeted. 16% of men and 10% of women said that they tried to intimidate another driver by following them.
Road rage can result in criminal penalties for assault or more for serious offences. This could lead to a hefty fine, jail and a greater difficulty in finding cheap car insurance.