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Our top five road rage tips


WE’VE seen a recent spate of road rage incidents captured on camera in Johannesburg and Pretoria, go viral.

In these videos we see people confronting one another in a blind rage after a traffic incident. This thoughtless and reckless behaviour only ends with someone being hurt or something being damaged, while criminal charges ensue for the aggressor. With the aim of reducing these incidents we’ve compiled a list of five ways in which to prevent road rage:

  1. Be considerate: Remember, we don’t own the road; we share it with fellow motorists. Giving someone that gap, or saying thank you, when someone provides you with one, could make their day and improve both your mood and their commuting experience.  Also remember, the person in the car who cuts you off, hoots or lets you through, isn’t doing it because they know you, but rather as either a response to their own frustration, or out of kindness, in the latter case; it’s not personal.

  2. Avoid conflict: Every fibre of your being may want to respond to that idiot who’s screaming at you from their window. Keep your windows closed and simply turn up the volume on your radio and ignore them. A direct confrontation can lead to a scuffle, vile outbursts, or even an accident, as we’ve all now seen in recent events.

  3. Deal with the situation In the event of a collision, simply stay calm. Bear in mind, this is why we have insurance. Remain in your vehicle until you’ve assessed your injuries and ensure that the other driver isn’t waiting for you to get out of your car, to start a skirmish. Make sure you get the other driver’s vehicle and personal information and leave the scene, amicably. Should you get into a conflict situation, avoid any physicality as this can lead to trouble with the law. Remind the antagonist of this too, should you be the passive party.

  4. Maintain a positive environment: Listening to peaceful music and maintaining a relaxed ambiance is key to remaining calm and level-headed in traffic. Understand that there’s no magical teleportation device to get through traffic; there’s very little that you can do if the N1 is blocked, so find a song that you like and pretend you’re somewhere else.

  5. Make use of technology: Apps, such as Waze and Google Maps along with the dedicated GPS devices like TomTom or a Garmin, now have live traffic functions that can provide you with alternate routes with less congestion and therefore less stress. Make use of these as they can save you minutes which is important if you’re running late for a meeting, for example.

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