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Study reveals disturbing rise in aggressive driving

A study released by State Farm in December 2013 showed that aggressive driving is on the rise in Illinois and across the U.S. Illinois drivers should be aware of what counts as aggressive driving and the extent of the problem of aggressive driving.

What is aggressive driving?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration defines aggressive driving as "when an individual commits a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property." Some common examples of aggressive driving include tailgating, improper or dangerous lane changes or passing, zipping in or out of parking spaces, driving too fast for weather conditions and ignoring traffic control devices like stoplights. According to the NHTSA, one of the most dangerous forms of aggressive driving is failing to stop for red traffic lights.

The NHTSA has identified aggressive driving as a serious public safety threat, as these driving behaviors often lead to motor vehicle accidents.

Increase in aggressive driving

State Farm conducted a survey of 1,000 drivers over the age of 18 years old between October 25 and November 3, 2013, asking about their experiences with aggressive driving. Almost two-thirds of the respondents had experienced acts of aggressive driving committed by other drivers at least six times within the three months previous to the poll. About 44 percent of the respondents admitted to committing acts of aggressive driving within the past three months.

A majority of drivers perceive men to be more aggressive, with 54 percent of those polled saying that men were more likely to be aggressive drivers and only 37 percent saying that men and women were equally likely to be aggressive drivers. Only one out of 10 respondents labeled women as more aggressive drivers.

Drivers cited traffic jams, running late and road construction as the top reasons for aggressive driving. People also reported they engaged in aggressive driving more frequently near the winter holidays, as more people are out holiday shopping and attending celebrations, making roads more crowded.

Holding aggressive drivers accountable

Those who drive aggressively put others in danger, and they often cause auto accidents. When aggressive drivers cause auto accidents that injure others, they are liable for the damage. If you have been injured in an auto accident caused by another driver's actions, seek the assistance of a skilled Illinois auto accident attorney with a history of successfully helping auto accident victims recover for their losses.

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