Take the Aggressive Driving Test

Charles County Sheriff's Office Calls Attention to Aggressive Driving

They may be parents or professionals, teens or seniors. They may be people running late, in a rush or angry. Aggressive drivers show contempt for traffic and safety laws and for other drivers and place themselves and other motorists at great risk for traffic crashes. The Charles County Sheriff's Office is urging aggressive drivers to change their dangerous driving behaviors.

The first step is to ask yourself, "Am I an aggressive driver?" To help, answer honestly the following questions.

Do you ever:

* Drive too fast and faster than the posted speed limit?
* Run red lights or stop signs?
* Weave in an out of traffic?
* Change lanes frequently an abruptly without the use of signals?
* Tailgate other vehicles?
* Follow too closely?

These are the most dangerous aggressive driving behaviors. The fact is, most motorists drive this way at times. Anytime you become selfish, irritated, bold or pushy in your vehicle, you stop respecting the rights and safety of other drivers and pedestrians.

Can you avoid being an aggressive driver? Yes, if you follow the following guidelines:

* Allow more travel time to get to your destination. It reduces stress dramatically.
* Come to a full stop at red lights and stop signs. Never run yellow lights.
* Let other drivers merge with you.
* Obey posted speed limits.
* Don't follow other drivers too closely.
* Resist temptation to "teach someone a lesson"
* Concentrate on driving, not the cell phone, music, passengers or other distractions.
* Remember that you can't control traffic, but you can control yourself, your driving and your emotions.

Finally, the Sheriff's Office is offering the following guidelines to help motorists avoid an aggressive driver. When you encounter someone driving aggressively:

* Get out of their way and steer clear of them on the road.
* Be calm. Remember that reaching your destination safely and calmly is your goal.
* Don't challenge them. Avoid eye contact. Ignore rude gestures and refuse to return them.
* Don't block the passing lane, especially if you are driving slower than most of the traffic. Move over to the right lane.
* Report aggressive driving to the police.

The Charles County Sheriff's Office can be reached at 301-932-2222 in La Plata, 301-743-2222 in Indian Head and 301-932-7777 in Waldorf. In an emergency, dial 911.

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