These tips can help you avoid a road rage encounter

WESTMINSTER, Colo. -- Road rage is on the rise in Colorado. With more people moving to the Centennial State, that means more traffic and a lot more frustration.

While things can get out of control quickly, there are things drivers can do to deescalate a situation without ever getting out of the car.

In 2017, aggressive drivers were the reason behind 87,268 calls in Colorado.

While you can't change traffic or the number of people on the roads, you can control how you drive.

The Colorado Safety Association offers training on how to practice defensive driving.

“Being a defensive driver is a way of saving time, lives and money by driving better," Colorado Safety Association Executive Director Trish Ennis said.

If you do get into a road rage situation and it becomes hostile the Problem Solvers have some tips you can try:

  • Switch Lanes
  • Don't make hand gestures
  • Don't roll down your window
  • Don't make eye contact
  • Stay in your car
  • Pull into a busy parking lot

“Typically, it’s a person who feels angry who is disgruntled, who feels like the world has not been fair to them," Metro State professor Dr. Shawn Worthy said.

There are some situations that are out of people's hands. Dr. Worthy, says a lot of folks who instigate road rage incidents have something else going on.

“Things typically don’t go from zero, they go from whatever your pre-existing mood state is," Dr. Worthy said.

While details are still coming forward about the Westminster incident, sometimes you can still have all the tools in the world, but there is no way you can control the person in the car next to you.

“Clearly, this was an incident, that this person could not cope with, in an ordinary and regular manner, and so it escalated to the point where he was willing to murder somebody,” Dr. Worthy said.

If you want to learn more tips about defensive driving, the Colorado Safety Association offers various training sessions.

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