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Fig3825
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Road Rage

I was at work on Saturday and on the drive home, some jerk driver was trying to pass me in a closed lane (on my right). I-66 in VA between Fairfax and the beltway (495) has several lanes that start and stop between exits, but the rightmost lane is closed aside from during rush hour. It was Saturday, and the lane was closed and is marked with digital "X"s over the lane. Anyway, this car thought he was being clever and tried to pass me on the right, having started his pass from the same lane I was in - I had seen him racing up behind me from the rear. Doing my duty, I closed the gap between my car and the car in front of me to teach him a lesson. He then nudged in anyway driving me into the lane to my left (because had I not moved or slammed on brakes, I would have clipped the back of his car as he swerved into my lane). And then, to express his displeasure with me trying to teach him a lesson for traveling in the closed lanes, he decided to feint to the left like he was going to sideswipe me. I don't really tolerate this type of crap, so I did the same back to him, except I have a large SUV and he was in a tiny car. I drove him back into his lane with a swerve to my right and then continued to drift towards him and further drove him into yet another lane to his right (back into the illegal/closed lane). He then accelerated around some cars and got in front of me and was one lane to my right and started throwing stuff out of his window in an attempt to hit my car. He missed, naturally, but ended up throwing several cups out his window and some other stuff that I didn't really have a chance to index... Blowing this off, I move back into the far left lane, satisfied with my cattle drive. He then accelerated around cars again an maneuvered into my same lane and got in front of me. Anticipating his next move, I started to brake and slow down and, as I had anticipated, he locked up his brakes. Since I had anticipated this move, I didn't even have to brake further to avoid him and was already 50 or so feet behind him. Bothered that he didn't cause me to slam on MY brakes, he and his two passengers started with the finger gestures out the window. I blew it off and they sped up and went on their way as did I.

Unfortunately, I didn't have enough sense to record the entire thing on my mobile phone camera - but I did think about it later, several miles down the road when they were nearing their exit. The incident was apparently still fresh on their minds as I was met with the gestures again along with a bunch of silly hollering from their windows from several lanes to my right. However, at that point I just managed to record a bunch of finger gestures and a bunch of hooting and hollering from him and his friends out the windows.

I imagine I could have just been a decent citizen and allowed them to overtake me from the right in an illegal lane, and slowed down to allow them to pursue their illegal activities and allowed them into my lane.

I normally don't act like this in traffic but it really rubs me the wrong way when I merge when I am supposed to and lesser people take advantage of others by driving around the normal flow of traffic, most often by illegal measures (shoulder, entrance ramp lanes, etc) just to get a 2 or 3 car jump. Granted, activities like lane posturing are beneath me, but I simply couldn't help it when these guys did this.

I really think the other driver escalated the situation by swerving at me, potentially endangering my life. I don't feel all that un-citizen like by closing the gap in an attempt to thwart an illegal move.

Discuss?

john gault
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My point of view on this subject is unique because I ride a bike as my primary form of transportation, have been for over 20 years. I ride so much that when I do get behind the wheel I got to think a little before I start up the car :?

I seem to be the target for some roadrage drivers and it can be frustrating. I'm the easy target, but I'm not really the cause of the major frustration. I can't tell you how many times I've seen a near-accident in front of me from a vehicle that all of a sudden decided to stop an turn (without a signal) or a vehicle that has to come to a screeching halt to a line of stopped cars...

I think it's incredible how many people die on the roads every year and many of those deaths are very preventable, but our laws and/or mindset about them is that they were simple accidents, no this is not true, but that's the mindset. BTW, for all the people killed on the roads every year there are many, many more that are seriously injured, that is injuries that are life changing including paralysis, brain damage....

Why the media pays so little attention to this is a point of frustration with me, but I'm starting to get wound up so I'll stop, NOW!

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rainbowgardener
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Fig, the other guy was a jerk, but you were the road rage-aholic, that turned what should have been a minor irritation into a very dangerous situation.

You know there's lots of people that have guns in their cars these days. You were lucky all they did was finger gestures.

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Fig3825
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@rainbowgardener:
I agree I escalated the situation beyond what was necessary. But I also feel that I was not the initial aggressor and that the other driver not only did a rage pass to my right (strike one), in a closed lane (strike two), but he then force merged (stike three) pushing me out of my lane and then swerved at me (can you have a stike four?) for only closing the gap on him for doing what he was doing. I simply sped up whereas he was doing quite a bit he should not have been doing.

Even if I had not sped up slightly, tightening the gap, he would have had a hard time fitting into the space between me and the driver in front of me safely. It's not like I had 100's of feet between me and the driver in front of me and I 'raced' the offender as he tried to pass me. I just increased my speed a mile per hour or two as I saw him start to try to pass me.

Yes, we were both wrong, but I certainly don't feel like I was the initial aggressor. I think the situation became dangerous when he force merged, driving me out of my lane and subsequently swerved at me before I did much of anything - aside from speeding up a bit.

Call it what you will. I did succumb to the rage after being endangered. I've never thrown a first punch, but if someone hits me, I hit back.

I guess based on your response, you think it's always better to back down and let the idiots advance? And are you are saying you've never 'closed the gap' in a similar situation?

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rootsy
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You escalated the situation. Stupid is as stupid does. The RIGHT thingto have done would have been not to play traffic enforcement and back off and allow them to merge in, no matter how much it irked you.

BUT I will say that inconsiderate drivers (and people in general) annoy me to no end and there is nothing I'd like more than to tick them off... I frown on poor manners.

With that said, I am one of those people out "there" who is ALWAYS armed and therefore I must adhere to the highest standard of conduct and be an upstanding law abiding citizen, because in the event of an altercation, if I in any way escalated it and deadly force was a result I'd be in for a long road of legal trouble.

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Fig3825
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You are probably right.

No excuses.

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Well, there are plenty of excuses and explanations for letting one get you. It happens to the best of us. It's tempting to rise to the bait.

I'm feeling like, out here at least in Northern California, that we live too close together. Too many people results in these kinds of things. I'm seriously thinking of moving out to somewhere less populated.
Last edited by webmaster on Mon Sep 12, 2011 6:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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applestar
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My first thought was Oh Boy! Where are the troopers and cops when you need them? :roll: It sounds like they did plenty of things to be pulled over for.

I drive a hefty SUV too, and it always amuses me when the tiny cars try to force me out of the way out of turn. Last time was a backed up two lane traffic merging to a single lane where the accepted method is to alternate, and this girl kept trying to get ahead of me, so I just kept her at the front wheelwell of my SUV, which is usually where you are supposed to decide to back off. She continued until she was in the shoulder lane, opened her window and was gesturing and yelling but my windows were closed and I could't hear a word. :wink: I suspect she didn't realize it wasn't her turn because she had been busy looking down -- possibly texting on her cell phone -- just prior to the merger. :roll:

Yes, yes, I feel guilty about the gas guzzler, but I must admit to a sense of satisfaction under those circumstances.... 8)

BTW, I *always* give way to cars and trucks driving with windows open on really hot days, since I figure they are already stressed from the lack of air conditioning and possibly likely to snap with least provocation....

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PunkRotten
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Stuff like this happens to me all the time. It pisses me off when you are on a bridge and the lanes will merge and you see people racing you to cut you off and get ahead. I almost got in an accident twice cause of this.
I sometimes do get mad enough and speed up or close gaps to not let these selfish jerks get away with it.


I have had other incidents with road rage and started to think I should carry a golf club or something as protection. One time some guy cut in front of me at a stop sign, I was turning right and he was coming from the left going straight. And because he decided to go when it wasn't his turn and tried to race ahead we were inches from hitting. He then was driving in front of me going slow on purpose and slamming on his breaks.

He tried to get me to rear-end him. And he was flipping me off in the mirror. Then he jumps out of the car screaming and acting like he wanted to fight.


But one of the worse was when I was at a McDonalds drive thru and right by the exit they have a little walkway, and you have to be very careful with people walking by. The way the walls are it really blinds oyu so you have to inch your car. Well I was going and some person walked by all of a sudden and I had to slam on my breaks.


After that I started to make a right turn onto the road and then I felt a slam behind me. I saw a car hit me. Then they kept hitting me. At first I thought something was wrong with their car. I pull over and they purposely slide their car on my driver side scraping it.


I realized this was all intentional. Some guy comes out screaming and yelling about how I stopped back there. He didn't realize I had to slam on my breaks to avoid hitting someone, and he took it as me slamming on my breaks on purpose to be a jerk to him cause he was behind me. He got up all in my face and I was really tempted to just kick this guys butt, but I got a hold of my senses and started writing down the license plate, description of car and started phoning the police cause he was taking off. I even followed him and found out where he lived.


I filed a police report and all that, and they went to his house afterwards. I am still waiting on hearing from the insurance or police at this point. I was lucky though my car did not receive a lot of damage. Just a little dent by the front tire and a little scrape on the drivers side. All the hits in the back were to my bumper only and no damage.

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gixxerific
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Sorry to say but I think you were the bigger problem. If they need that space so bad let them have and never think of it again. But you escalated the situation into one that could have turned dangerous to yourself them or others.

Sorry, you can hate me now. :(

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gixxerific
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applestar wrote: BTW, I *always* give way to cars and trucks driving with windows open on really hot days, since I figure they are already stressed from the lack of air conditioning and possibly likely to snap with least provocation....
I knew I liked you for some reason. I don't have air, heck when it's really hot out my drivers window doesn't roll down (bad motor). Not too mention I'm likely to snap without provocation anyway's with or without AC! :lol: :wink:

DoubleDogFarm
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Yikes!, I'm going to go talk politics with tedln. :P

Bye
Eric

Bobberman
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I have the most trouble with tailgatters and I do have a temper. I usually pull over and let them pass but if they are nastyI will stop right in the middle of the highway and wave them on! I do carry my shot gun behind my truck seat not loaded of coure but I have the shells in the glove compartment! I hate when I am doing the speed limit on a back road and they pass me in a no passing lane! I have been really suprised that alot of the ladies are passing in a no passing lane! Are woman on the war path when it comes to driving I really think so!

Charlie MV
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DoubleDogFarm wrote:Yikes!, I'm going to go talk politics with tedln. :P

Bye
Eric
Good lord, no kidding.

Note to self: add Alexandria Va. to my bypass list. South Carolina rednecks would be humbled by this display.

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tomf
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When driving one can not take personal what others do, you just have to drive with caution and try to avoid an acceded due to their bad driving.
I let people in all the time; I often motion to a person on trying to join traffic to move in.

Now if I had missiles thing may be different.

I have noticed that cretin vehicles are driven more aggressive than others, big SUV's and large pickup trucks can be aggressive and love to ride your bumper even though you have no place to go with out running into the guy in front of you. Small fast cars are some of the worst and if they are loud; look out. BMW drivers are mostly self centered and will cut you off, they rarely let any one in. Old Hondas and mini vans are driven by people from south of the boarder and many are bad drivers. Just for fun I will add that big SUV's are often driven by a blonde and she is on the phone; it is mostly men in them and pickups that are aggressive although.
I could go on as I keep watch so as to avoid problems with bad drivers.

Most accidents are caused from tailgating.
What is sad is that after these people drive like this the still wind up next to you at the red light; will they ever learn.

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rainbowgardener
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Bobberman wrote: I have been really suprised that alot of the ladies are passing in a no passing lane! Are woman on the war path when it comes to driving I really think so!
Oh man, now we are going to throw completely uncalled for sexism in to this discussion...Asking for trouble, Bobbie... There is nothing truthful you can say about "the ladies" since there are 150 million or so of us in this country. Some are good drivers, some are not, just like men. But I really do suspect that if you looked at road rage incidents, those are by a very large majority men. It's usually men that get territorial and feel like they have to defend their space. It is usually men that get offended and feel like they have to defend their egos.

Whatever happens on the road is NOT a pride thing guys! There are zero points for showing someone who is right, or proving anything, or teaching lessons. It's only about getting from point A to point B safely without messing up anyone else's day. Personally, I make a point of letting people in when they are trying to merge and doing whatever I can to be extra courteous and make things easier for people. Everyone has enough hassles. The extra 30 seconds it costs me to let someone in makes no difference in my day and getting smiles and waves instead of flipped birds is much nicer...

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Fig3825
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It's the same folks that act like that in traffic, the ones that forced me out of my lane that someday will try to rob a bank or rape someone in a dark alley. Applying your lessons to practical situations would lend to your man standing by and allowing the criminal to have his way - after all, it would be the courteous thing to do, right?

I grew up in Atlanta. I'm not used to people acting like jerks 24/7 in traffic. It was a big eye opener when I got up here. I guess the 11 years on Virginia roads have changed me. I am what I am. Try and test that and you'll get what you deserve.
Last edited by Fig3825 on Tue Sep 13, 2011 8:55 am, edited 1 time in total.

john gault
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It's tough being a guy, you know with all that testosterone and stuff; simply drives you crazy.... :lol:

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applestar
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That's an excellent suggestion, Marlingardener! :D
...using seniority mod prerogative to lock the thread. :wink:



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