TRAFFIC JAMS, tailgating and other drivers jumping the queue: Britain’s roads and their users have been infuriating motorists for decades.
In 1994, the situation sparked and road rage exploded onto the streets. The situation got so bad that one motorway services on the M6 set aside special road rage bays where drivers could get a five minute massage to relax them.
It was in response to a series of assaults from people who rushed from their vehicles to attack other road users whose driving had infuriated them. An orthodox Jew was fined for punching a Biddhist monk, a lorry driver was attacked by a man with a 3ft-long axe, and a fight between two women, after a car door was scratched by a holly bush, left one with two broken teeth.
Today, motorists might be better behaved, but a new survey reveals that many are just keeping their rage bottled up inside the car. The poll asked motorists whether they had lost concentration because of stress or annoyance. What proportion said yes?
A survey for Brake, the road safety charity and Direct Line, the insurer, found that 71% of drivers had lost concentration because of stress or annoyance, with potentially serious results. Aggressive driving was responsible for 127 fatal accidents and 631 serious ones in 2013, according to the Department for Transport.
The poll found that the most common reason for stress behind the wheel was the behaviour of other road users.