Think Fast: How to deal with road rage

Think Fast: How to deal with road rage

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - We're keeping your safety in mind as we kick off a new series this month on Sunrise called

Think Fast

. We highlight what the experts say you should do when presented with real-life situations.

Our first scenario? A run-in with an enraged driver on the road.

"That creates a dangerous driving environment," said Trooper David Jones with South Carolina Highway Patrol.

Jones said some drivers easily get angry and things can escalate pretty quickly out on the roads.

"We see where aggressive drivers may use all sorts of methods to get their point across," he said.

AAA defines road rage as malicious behavior directed at specific drivers which may escalate to violence. Examples include cursing, obscene gestures, throwing objects, ramming, sideswiping, forcing a driver off the road and brandishing or discharging firearms.

"You start losing your cool and then that's when you start making bad driving decisions," said Jones.

Many road rage incidents can even lead to crashes. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, nearly two-thirds of all automobile related fatalities involve aggressive driving.

"If you happen to pull up at a red light, and you're stuck in traffic with them, don't acknowledge them," Jones said. "Don't look them in the eye or engage back with them."

But even then, some drivers won't let the anger go. In that case, Jones said you might have to exit the interstate or turn down another street to get away.

"Don't continue riding side by side and engaging that person because it's only going to make both of you more angry and it's going to lead to bigger problems."

Jones said if you still feel threatened, pull into a well-lit gas station or restaurant. In any case, you can always dial *HP on your cell phone.

"Let us know what happened and an officer can respond. And if need be, they can get a vehicle description by simply just pulling the video surveillance from that establishment," Jones said.

The Richland County Sheriff's Department said it received at least eight road rage incidents in 2014 bad enough to warrant an incident being filed.

Be sure to tune in to Sunrise on Wednesday mornings for future installments of

Think Fast

.

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