Aggressive Driving: A Leading Cause of Serious Georgia Traffic Accidents
We have all had the experience where we are driving down the road when a vehicle comes flying up behind our car weaving in and out of traffic. The driver becomes quickly annoyed because we are not driving fast enough and begins flashing headlights and honking the horn. Finally, the vehicle zooms around our vehicle and cuts us off just to make a point. This type of aggressive driving is a leading cause of serious accidents.
While studies vary on just how frequently aggressive driving contributes to serious car accidents, it has been estimated that aggressive driving contributes to as many as 56% of fatal motor vehicle accidents. Aggressive driving related accidents are especially tragic because they are the needless result of drivers who are intentionally violating traffic laws and safe driving practices. At Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, we have been representing those serious hurt in Georgia auto accidents, including those injured as a result of aggressive driving, for over 36 years.
The exact definition of aggressive driving varies, but it is defined by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) as a driver who commits a combination of moving offenses so as to endanger persons and property. What distinguishes aggressive drivers from other negligent drivers on the road is that their traffic violations and unsafe driving practices are not the result of ordinary carelessness, but rather an intentional decision to violate a combination of basic traffic laws. It has been estimated that aggressive driving kills over 1,000 people a year and results in injuries to over 150,000 more people. Some common examples of aggressive driving include the following behaviors:
- Weaving in and out of traffic to pass
- Retaliating against other drivers by cutting them off
- Speeding including racing other vehicles
- Disregarding traffic signals/signs
- Tailgating and repeatedly flashing one's brights
- Flying up behind or around other vehicles at unsafe excessive speeds
Aggressive driving has become such a significant a problem as a cause of serious injuries that fourteen states have actually passed laws making aggressive driving a separate motor vehicle offense. An aggressive driver is often motivated by such factors as impatience and annoyance. Because aggressive drivers are often traveling at excessive speeds, the auto accidents they cause tend to be more severe and often result in devastating and life-changing permanent injuries and an extremely high number of fatalities. Aggressive driving is typically a form a negligence, which means a victim of a collision caused by an aggressive driver may seek damages for one's injuries including compensation for loss of income, pain and suffering, disability, medical expenses, and even punitive damages to punish and discourage such unsafe and reckless conduct.
While it can be tempting to retaliate to such aggressive driving practices, this only puts one at greater risk. Further, some aggressive drivers are prone to "road rage" which basically means engaging in an act intended to hurt another driver. Road rage goes beyond driving that is intentionally reckless. Instead it is driving intended to harm someone, or sometimes an assault with a weapon or other form of physical violence. To avoid such escalation and keep oneself and one's family safe, it is better simply to drive courteously and get out of the way of aggressive drivers.
If you or someone you love has been serious injured by an aggressive driver, the Georgia motor vehicle accident attorneys at Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, will seek compensation for you and your family. Call Montlick & Associates today to see how we can help. We are available to assist clients throughout all of Georgia, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Dalton Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. Call us today for your free consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333), or visit us on the web at www.montlick.com. No matter where you are located, we are just a phone call away and we will even come to you.