Road rage in SA: Bloem driver shows manic side

Bloemfontein - A dash-cam clip shows a classic SA road-rage moment; a driver being hooted and subsequently driving like a maniac in Bloemfontein.

A video clip, posted by Arrive Alive on Twitter, shows a classic example of a driver  deliberately provoking another road user/motorist with reckless behaviour

Who is right or wrong?

After a traffic light in Bloemfontein turned green, a Volkswagen Passat and a Toyota Hilux turn right at an intersection in Bloemfontein. The VW made its intentions clear by indicating, but the bakkie moved too far into the intersection before making the turn to the right.

But it’s what happens afterwards that turns the situation into a road-rage debacle.

Infuriated by the actions of the bakkie driver, the VW accelerates and swerves in front of the bakkie, causing him/her to slow down. The Passat driver raised a middle-finger out of the vehicle and hooted at the bakkie driver in a severe fit of road rage.

READ: 'You assaulted me!' Angry driver 'stabs' BMW in bizarre Gauteng road rage

The car returns to its original lane, only to stop in front of the bakkie again. This time the bakkie driver had to leave the road not to ram into the car.

Johan Jonck from Arrive Alive says: "Perhaps important to note is that we MUST drive more defensively - accept that other drivers may make a mistake and may not have intentionally inconvenienced or placed you in danger. Reckless swerving in front of another and suddenly slamming on the brakes or raising the middle-finger is doing nobody any good  and your actions may put others at risk."

"One of the important aspects when dealing with road rage is to remain calm, to breathe and not to react on the agitation that may be caused by busy road conditions or the inconsiderate behaviour of other road users. Road Safety is a team activity - we should all do our best to enable all road users to arrive alive at their destinations!"

Do you have any road rage footage or stories? Email us or reach us via Facebook  and Twitter.

How to avoid aggressive driving

Arrive Alive lists some simple courteous driving practices:

  • When you merge, make sure you have plenty of room. Always use your turn signal to show your intentions before making a move. If someone cuts you off, slow down and give them room to merge into your lane.

  • If you are in the right lane and someone wants to pass, move over and let them by. You may be "in the left" because you are traveling at the speed limit - but you may also be putting yourself in danger by making drivers behind you angry.

  • Allow at least a two-second space between your car and the car ahead. Drivers may get angry when they are followed too closely. If you feel you are being followed too closely, signal and pull over when safe to do so, allowing the other driver to pass.

  • Use your horn to ONLY warn of danger and never as a means to provoke response.

  • Keep your hands on the wheel and avoid making any gestures that might anger another driver. That includes "harmless" expressions of irritation like shaking your head.

  • If another driver is acting angry, don't make eye contact.

  • Give angry drivers lots of room. If another driver tries to pick a fight, put as much distance between you as possible. And, remember "it takes two to tango". One angry driver can't start a fight unless another driver is willing to join in.

For more safe driving tips, visit Arrive Alive.

Can make the turn: The VW Passat was well within his/her right to turn right. Image: Arrive Alive

These 10 points can help you avoid road rage:

1. Forget work or home worries, concentrate on driving.

2. Plan your journey to reduce anxiety and stress.

3. Adopt a positive mental attitude - to help with frustration.

4. Play music this can reduce stress.

5. Don't try to change other drivers attitudes, you can't but you can change your own.

6. Be courteous and stay calm if provoked.

7. Drive with your car doors locked and if you see trouble don't leave the safety of your vehicle.

8. Count from 1-10 (it's old and it works!)

9. Don't retaliate by sounding your horn, flashing your lights or gesturing, this will only aggravate the situation.

10. If you are a victim of aggression take the registration number and report incident to the police.

For more tips, visit Arrive Alive.

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