Tips For Recognizing and Avoiding Aggressive Driving - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers

Tips For Recognizing and Avoiding Aggressive Driving


Speeding, tailgating and weaving in and out of lanes are more than bad driving behaviours that violate the law, they are also signs of aggressive driving. According to the provincial police in Ontario, fatalities caused by aggressive driving have increased by at least 80 percent. Aggressive and unsafe driver behaviour is so dangerous that the provincial government amended the Highway Traffic Act to make common aggressive driving behaviours a violation of the law punishable by fines, license suspension and the possibility of serving six months in jail.

Recognizing aggressive driving

Someone who drives in a hostile and unsafe way showing little or no regard for the welfare of other motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians is an aggressive driver. Common aggressive driving behaviours include any of the following:

  • Speeding
  • Following too close to other vehicles
  • Frequent lane changes
  • Abrupt and unsafe lane changes
  • Failing to obey traffic signals
  • Failing to yield the right of way to vehicles or pedestrians
  • Disobeying stop signs
  • Frequent use of the horn and shouting at other drivers

Other signs of aggressive driving include using the hands to gesture at other drivers and attempting to hit other vehicles or force them off the road. Drivers have been known to exit their vehicles at traffic signals or stop signs to engage in physical confrontations with other motorists.

What to do if you see an aggressive driver

The best thing you can do if confronted by a person driving aggressively is remain calm. You do not want to escalate the situation with displays of anger or frustration. Keep your focus on the road and not on the other driver as you look for an opportunity to safely change lanes or pull to the side of the road to allow the enraged driver to be on his or her way.

If the actions of an aggressive driver jeopardize your safety or pose a threat to you, report the incident to the police as soon as you can safely do so. Make sure you have the license plate number and a description of the vehicle and, if possible, the driver.

How to avoid becoming an aggressive driver

When you are in a hurry to get to work or to an appointment, the natural tendency is to drive faster. Even though speeding is considered an aggressive driving behaviour, according to a report from Transport Canada, 70 percent of drivers admit to doing it. The percentage increases to 81 percent for those asked about their driving habits on highways. You can prevent yourself from engaging in unsafe conduct with the following simple rules:

  • Allow additional time for traffic congestion and other delays
  • Do not exceed the speed limit
  • When stuck in traffic, wait until you can safely and legally use your cellphone to call ahead to say you will be a few minutes late
  • Remain calm and do not let other drivers make you angry or upset
  • Signal when changing lanes, and do not move to the other lane until it is safe to do so
  • Leave enough distance between your car and the car in front to allow you to stop safely
  • Save use of your car’s horn only for emergencies
  • Stay to the right on multilane roadways to allow other drivers to pass you

Planning your trip and adhere to safe driving techniques go a long way toward avoiding aggressive driving.

Personal injury lawyers can help

An accident caused by an aggressive driver can leave you with serious physical injuries. The personal injury lawyers at Diamond & Diamondhave years of experience obtaining compensation for accident victims injured due to the actions of negligent and reckless drivers.Contact our 24/7 injury hotline at 1-800-567-HURT or visit our website to speak to someone now about your claim. Consultations are free, and we have offices located throughout Ontario.

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