Aggressive Driving Cover Art Planner Contents

AGGRESSIVE DRIVING
FACT-TIP SHEET WITH TALKING POINTS

• Aggressive driving is defined as a progression of unlawful driving actions such as:

  • speeding -- exceeding the posted limit or driving too fast for conditions;
  • improper or excessive lane changing: failing to signal intent, failing to see that movement can be made safely, or
  • improper passing -- failing to signal intent, using an emergency lane to pass, or passing on the shoulder.

• The "aggressive driver" fails to consider the human element involved. The anonymity of being behind the wheel gives aggressive drivers a false sense of control and power; therefore, they seldom take into account the consequences of their actions.

• Aggressive Driving vs. Road Rage. There is a difference. Aggressive driving is a traffic offense; road rage is a criminal offense.

• Road rage is defined as "an assault with a motor vehicle or other dangerous weapon by the operator or passenger(s) of another motor vehicle or an assualt precipitated by an incident that occurred on a roadway."

• Road rage requires willful and wanton disregard for the safety of others.

• A national survey sponsored by NHTSA of 6,000 drivers over the age of sixteen showed that the public supports increased enforcement including photo enforcement, increasing sanctions, increasing intervention by vehicle occupants and increasing public awareness of risks, as ways of reducing these types of unsafe driving practices.

• The posted speed limit is a law that applies to all traffic lanes. Technically speaking, there is no fast lane or slow lane. In at least 21 states, slower traffic is expected to keep right, except for emergency vehicles, which are permitted to exceed the posted speed limit, but only when their lights and sirens are on. In some states, laws specify "keep right except to pass."

• According to NHTSA’s Traffic Safety Facts 1998, approximately 6,335,000 crashes occur in the United States each year. It is unknown exactly how many of those crashes are caused by aggressive driving. Estimates indicate the number to be substantial, based on the violations committed by the drivers of the vehicles involved in the crashes and reported by law enforcement agencies as the contributing factor of the crash.

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