ROAD RAGE: Avoiding a dangerous situation

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. You encounter a variety of drivers when you’re on the road. Slow drivers, tailgaters, and distracted drivers may make your blood boil. But experts say it’s important not to provoke other drivers because you never know who has a case of road rage, or who is carrying a weapon.
“You don’t have anything to gain by being macho. And you don’t know what’s in that other car. That person very well could be carrying a gun,” said Roy Green.
Green has decades of experience in teaching driver’s ed.
“I’ve always promoted driver’s ed as being the most important class a student has in school. They’re not going to kill themselves with a math book,” said Green.
He says when high schools took driving lessons out of the curriculum, he created his own driving school.
“Usually people are somewhat sympathetic to a student driver,” he said, “Usually.”
He says Springfield is growing, traffic is becoming heavier, and road rage is becoming more of an issue.
“I have to to watch myself because I want to teach other people how to drive out here sometimes,” he explained.
But he says yelling at another driver, or flipping them the bird, could lead to a dangerous confrontation fueled by road rage.
“It’s so sad that those things happen, and they should not happen. But they do,” said Green.
His advice? Minimize your interactions with other drivers.
“If we’re sitting at a light, like we are right now, I don’t really want to make much eye contact side to side,” Green said.
But if you find yourself in a dangerous situation, quick thinking behind the wheel could save your life.
“Don’t go home,” he said, “There’s nothing to be gained by stopping and having a conversation. Just, like I say, forget it and drive on. Hopefully they don’t follow you too far.”
He says call police, and if you have to pull over, do it in a safe location that’s populated and well-lit.