Street Smarts blog: Seven tips for dealing with aggressive drivers

Nov 17, 2009 Read more: Santa Cruz Sentinel 45
With the holidays upon us and everyone in a rush to get their shopping done, patience may be running at a premium on the roads. Read more
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From Santa Cruz

San Francisco, CA

#1 Nov 17, 2009
"Get out of their way."

That's the most important one. Please, if you are driving under the speed limit, particularly on country roads where it's hard to pass, pull over when people flash their lights, honk, or tail gate you. It's REALLY annoying being forced to do 25 in a 40 just because someone doesn't know how to handle driving in the mountains.

Again: Flashing lights? Honking horn? Tail gateing? PULL OVER at then next turn out!
From Santa Cruz

San Francisco, CA

#2 Nov 17, 2009
Also, don't try and play "neighborhood pace car", that's a sure way to incite road rage in others.
Aptos Resident

Pacifica, CA

#3 Nov 17, 2009
From Santa Cruz wrote:
"Get out of their way."
That's the most important one. Please, if you are driving under the speed limit, particularly on country roads where it's hard to pass, pull over when people flash their lights, honk, or tail gate you. It's REALLY annoying being forced to do 25 in a 40 just because someone doesn't know how to handle driving in the mountains.
Again: Flashing lights? Honking horn? Tail gateing? PULL OVER at then next turn out!
I agree. I am ALWAYS suck behind a person going 45-50 in the FAST LANE on Highway 1 during my morning commute. There is NO reason for it. It's not just annoying, it's dangerous! Just as speeding is dangerous, driving slow is, too.

I am patient, but there's no reason to hold up traffic in the fast lane. That can cause an accident, or cause injury to yourself, or someone else. Get in the slow lane if you want to drive slow! And be safe!
Jim

San Jose, CA

#4 Nov 17, 2009
I pull over for people who come up behind me, even though I'm already doing over the speed limit, unless they tailgate me. Then I don't pull over and let them try to scramble to get around.

Since: May 08

Santa Cruz, CA

#5 Nov 17, 2009
From Santa Cruz wrote:
Also, don't try and play "neighborhood pace car", that's a sure way to incite road rage in others.
Nothing wrong with "neighborhood pace car" at the speed limit in a residential area.
From Santa Cruz

San Francisco, CA

#6 Nov 17, 2009
Xanthippe wrote:
<quoted text>
Nothing wrong with "neighborhood pace car" at the speed limit in a residential area.
Residential area is one thing, but I meant in them mountains. It's not just going the speed limit, it's people who think they need to slow down to almost a complete stop before taking the next turn.
From Santa Cruz

San Francisco, CA

#7 Nov 17, 2009
Jim wrote:
...unless they tailgate me. Then I don't pull over and let them try to scramble to get around.
You're really only making it worse by doing that.
turdblossom

Berkeley, CA

#8 Nov 17, 2009
Ah the wisdom of the Hill People, at least acknowledge that you are all total douchebags for terrorizing lost tourists. 17 is for racing, everybody knows that.
From Santa Cruz wrote:
"Get out of their way."
That's the most important one. Please, if you are driving under the speed limit, particularly on country roads where it's hard to pass, pull over when people flash their lights, honk, or tail gate you. It's REALLY annoying being forced to do 25 in a 40 just because someone doesn't know how to handle driving in the mountains.
Again: Flashing lights? Honking horn? Tail gateing? PULL OVER at then next turn out!
Safety Space

Fremont, CA

#9 Nov 17, 2009
From Santa Cruz wrote:
<quoted text>
You're really only making it worse by doing that.
It is very difficult to use a turn-out when being tailgated.
Let Them Blow

San Luis Obispo, CA

#10 Nov 17, 2009
Xanthippe wrote:
<quoted text>
Nothing wrong with "neighborhood pace car" at the speed limit in a residential area.
Agreed. 25 on a residential street (especially MY street) means just what it says...25...not 45! if someone doesn't like the fact that I drive 25 on my street, they can basically have a miserable day for all I care, but I will not pull over for anyone wanting to speed down a residential street full of children, pedestrians, and pets. I have probably saved a life or two by doing this. You're welcome.
Safety Space

Fremont, CA

#11 Nov 17, 2009
From Santa Cruz wrote:
Also, don't try and play "neighborhood pace car", that's a sure way to incite road rage in others.
The speed limit in most residential areas in the city is 25 MPH, for very good reasons. It's unreasonable to expect others to speed, break the law or otherwise drive wrecklessly because another driver can't relax, read a clock or obey the law. Tailgating is illegal.
Let Them Blow

San Luis Obispo, CA

#12 Nov 17, 2009
Safety Space wrote:
<quoted text>
It is very difficult to use a turn-out when being tailgated.
Agreed. tailgating is illegal. Driving slow isn't. people seem to forget that. I cannot possibly pull over into a turnout to allow a tailgater to pass for fear of causing an accident. It simply isn't a safe thing to do when you are being followed at an unsafe distance. If you want me to pull over into a turn out, then back off a little.
Willis

Santa Cruz, CA

#13 Nov 17, 2009
There is no need to tailgate. Flashing lights is a simple safe way to let people know you want them to use the next turn out.
Sum Dim

Oakland, CA

#14 Nov 17, 2009
What really pisses me off is when the speed limit is 50 and some **** is only going 55 or 60.

That REALLY pisses me off!
From Santa Cruz wrote:
"Get out of their way."
That's the most important one. Please, if you are driving under the speed limit, particularly on country roads where it's hard to pass, pull over when people flash their lights, honk, or tail gate you. It's REALLY annoying being forced to do 25 in a 40 just because someone doesn't know how to handle driving in the mountains.
Again: Flashing lights? Honking horn? Tail gateing? PULL OVER at then next turn out!
Tailgate response

Santa Cruz, CA

#15 Nov 17, 2009
According to the Commercial Driver's Handbook, if one is being followed too closely, we're supposed to slow down so that we are not hit by the tailgater if we have to suddenly stop. The closer you get the slower I'm supposed to go...
ben cartwright

Morgan Hill, CA

#16 Nov 17, 2009
Tailgate response wrote:
According to the Commercial Driver's Handbook, if one is being followed too closely, we're supposed to slow down so that we are not hit by the tailgater if we have to suddenly stop. The closer you get the slower I'm supposed to go...
...i agree 100 percent .. i do the same .. people who tailgate are aggressivley trying to force you into a dangerous situation .. hold the speed at the limit ,, let em smash into you , it is always the person who rear end s who is at fault...there is no way someone is going to force me too speed or pull over every time some is late for work behind me and is so because of poor time management
serioulsly

San Jose, CA

#19 Nov 17, 2009
Toll_Free wrote:
<quoted text>
Sorry, but you are reading that wrong.
According to the CDL Handbook, if you are being followed by more than 5 cars, you are REQUIRED BY LAW to PULL OVER and YIELD THE RIGHT OF WAY to the traffic behind you, if you cannot MAINTAIN THE SPEED L.I.M.I.T.!
And no, you are not supposed to continue to slow down. According to the drivers handbook, both commercial and non-commercial Class C, you are supposed to yield to traffic going faster than you, and to oncoming. So, if someone is tailgating you, it IS illegal for you to either slow down (this incites road rage, and IS illegal), and it is an infraction for you TO NOT PULL OVER at your earliest possible safest and convenient time... This doesn't mean at the pullout at Lexington Reservoir, either.
I love the people driving Prius' and the like that do 20 over the hill. It's the ones that do 20, and when you come up behind them on a blind corner doing the speed limit and the freak out, throw their hands in the air, give you the universal #1 salute, pull over where it isn't safe and give YOU the dirty look... Because they are too scared to actually DRIVE RIGHT (Which is a term that is used in MOST other countries as LAW!).
To the people openly BRAGGING about holding others up: Does it REALLY make you feel that much better about yourself to force your will upon others? Seriously!
--Toll_Free


Now this person knows what's up!! everyone else on this board is probably the idiot doing 50 in the fast lane
Aptos Resident

Pacifica, CA

#20 Nov 17, 2009
Toll_Free wrote:
<quoted text>
Sorry, but you are reading that wrong.
According to the CDL Handbook, if you are being followed by more than 5 cars, you are REQUIRED BY LAW to PULL OVER and YIELD THE RIGHT OF WAY to the traffic behind you, if you cannot MAINTAIN THE SPEED L.I.M.I.T.!
And no, you are not supposed to continue to slow down. According to the drivers handbook, both commercial and non-commercial Class C, you are supposed to yield to traffic going faster than you, and to oncoming. So, if someone is tailgating you, it IS illegal for you to either slow down (this incites road rage, and IS illegal), and it is an infraction for you TO NOT PULL OVER at your earliest possible safest and convenient time... This doesn't mean at the pullout at Lexington Reservoir, either.
I love the people driving Prius' and the like that do 20 over the hill. It's the ones that do 20, and when you come up behind them on a blind corner doing the speed limit and the freak out, throw their hands in the air, give you the universal #1 salute, pull over where it isn't safe and give YOU the dirty look... Because they are too scared to actually DRIVE RIGHT (Which is a term that is used in MOST other countries as LAW!).
To the people openly BRAGGING about holding others up: Does it REALLY make you feel that much better about yourself to force your will upon others? Seriously!
--Toll_Free
Very helpful post!

I agree, it is DANGEROUS to slow down if someone is tail gaiting you - That will cause them to fly into your bumper! What idiot thought the LAW was to slow down? You pull the f over!

To clarify, myself, and probably a couple of others posting on here, are not talking about speeding in 25 zones, they're (myself included) are talking about people who go 25 in a 40 zone, or 40-50 in a 65 zone. We're not talking about being annoyed by someone going the SPEED LIMIT.

I absolutely respect the speed limit, and like to go the posted speed limit, it's the morons going dangerously UNDER the limit in the freaking fast lane!

Thank you Toll Free, great post.
sold the prius

United States

#21 Nov 17, 2009
Sum Dim wrote:
What really pisses me off is when the speed limit is 50 and some **** is only going 55 or 60.
That REALLY pisses me off!
<quoted text>
then don't drive
Lucas

AOL

#22 Nov 17, 2009
I've noticed that holding a thick ceramic coffee mug out of the window gets tailgaters to back off...

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