Many dog owners find the habitual act of walking their family pet is relaxing and a great way to clear their mind. Rarely are there instances reported of road-raged pedestrians, but sometimes the stress of the day can push anyone to aggression. As Arizona car and pedestrian accident attorneys, we hope pedestrians and drivers alike keep their patience with each other to prevent putting anyone in danger.
On Tuesday, a Massachusetts woman was charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, vandalism to property, and disorderly conduct after she threw a bag of dog feces at a passing driver (Associated Press via AZ Central 10/5/10). The situation seems bizarre, but the woman was walking her dog and reported seeing a near-miss accident with a car and a bike. The next day the driver contacted the police and informed them that she had thrown feces in his face. She later admitted to doing this because she thought he was speeding. It seems as though she may have had a case of pedestrian road rage!
Road rage can be dangerous in any capacity, whether in a pedestrian, bicyclist, or car driver. Some signs of an aggressive driver are someone who is weaving through traffic, tailgating, and honking their horn excessively. Aggressive driving accounts for nearly 1/3 of all accidents and a resulting 2/3 of total fatalities, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The dog feces may not seem like a dangerous weapon, but it could have obscured the driver’s view and caused a much worse situation.
To prevent or combat road rage in yourself while you’re on the road, here are a few tips that may help you regain your composure:
1. Avoid listening to loud or “aggressive” music, as this may increase your stress level. Jazz, easy listening, a comedy channel, or an audio book can help calm you.
2. Try faking a smile for 30 seconds. When your muscles communicate this action to your brain, it triggers a release of happy feelings, even though you’re faking it.
3. Be the “bigger person.” Aggressive drivers are not likely to target you personally, they probably have legitimate reasons in their mind for their actions. Allowing them space is good manners and will give you the feeling of being the “bigger person.”
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident that may have been caused by an aggressive driver, you may deserve compensation. Call us today for a free consultation at (602) 267-1280.