A recent incident occurred that could have easily been prevented. David Jackson, 26, became involved in a road rage incident with a 50 year old male driver of a 2007 Chevrolet pickup truck. The incident started when Jackson flung a cigarette butt outside of his vehicle hitting the side of the pickup truck. When this occurred, the driver of the pickup truck followed the car and cut it off on purpose. The dispute raged on for a few miles on Interstate 10 until the driver of the car, Jackson, pulled out a gun and fired three bullets at the truck on I-10 near Williams Boulevard. Inside the truck was the driver’s 10 year old son, who suffered a graze wound and is in stable condition. After the shots were fired, the driver of the pickup truck rammed into Jackson’s car to make sure he would not get away. Jackson was eventually arrested by the police and charged for multiple felonies.
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Aggressive driving has been a problem on American roadways for a while, and it seems to only be getting worse. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration defines road rage as when a driver ‘commits moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property or is an assault with a motor vehicle or other dangerous weapon by the operator or passenger of one motor vehicle on the operator or passengers of another motor vehicle.’ Many road rage incidents occur when a driver is under stress in other areas of their life. The addition of congested traffic can add and multiply to this existing stress. This will then explode when a driver perceives that someone else on the road has acted in an aggressive way, whether intentional or not.
There are many behaviors that can cause road rage and should be avoided, including:
1. Lane Blocking – Do not block the passing lane; stay out of the far left lane and yield to the right for any vehicle wanting to pass.
2. Tailgating – Maintain a safe distance from the vehicle in front of you. Hundreds of deadly traffic altercations begin when one driver tailgates another.
3. Signal Lights – Do not switch lanes without first signaling your intentions to do so, and make sure you do not cut someone off when you move over.
4. Gestures – If you want to wave to another driver, please use all of your fingers, not just one!
5. Horn – Use the horn sparingly and only in emergency situations. No one knows what may set off another driver.
Road rage is a serious issue that leads to many unnecessary collisions and fatalities. The following statistics compiled from the NHTSA shows that aggressive driving and road rage cause serious problems on our roads:
1. 66% of traffic fatalities are caused by aggressive driving.
2. Males under the age of 19 are the most likely to exhibit road rage.
3. Half of the drivers who are on the receiving end of an aggressive behavior, such as horn honking, a rude gesture, or tailgating admit to responding with aggressive behavior themselves.
4. Over a seven year period, 216 fatalities and 12,610 injuries were attributed to road rage.
5. 2 percent of drivers admit to trying to run an aggressor off the road.
If you have been a victim of road rage and have been injured in a car collision it is very important to hire an experienced Louisiana attorney to protect your rights. The Cardone Law Firm serves the entire State of Louisiana including Ascension Parish, Donaldsonville, Assumption Parish, Napoleonville, Baton Rouge, Jefferson Parish, Estelle, Gretna, Harvey, Kenner, Marrero, Metairie, New Orleans, Terrytown, Westwego, Lafayette Parish, Lafourche Parish, Thibodaux, Livingston Parish, Orleans Parish, Plaquemines Parish, Belle Chasse, and St. Charles Parish. It is important to contact a skilled New Orleans attorney, such as Mr. Cardone, as soon as possible after a car collision. Cliff Cardone has practiced law nearly 40 years and has primarily handled personal injury matters. If you have been injured in a car collision, Phone Cardone at 1-504-522-3333 for a free in person consultation. He is direct, insightful, proactive, and passionate about his client’s cases.