Study: Holiday Season Brings Out The Worst In Drivers

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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — If you have witnessed a case of aggressive driving lately, you are in the majority of drivers surveyed across the country. A new study shows the holiday season is among the worst times for erratic behavior on the highways.

Pat Warren has more on the results of the survey.

State Farm Insurance asked the questions and drivers delivered their frustrations.

An online survey finds 64 percent of drivers experienced aggressive driving six times or more in the past three months. Forty-four percent own up to aggressive behavior themselves.

WJZ asked drivers what they consider aggressive.

“Cutting people off. I hate when people do that; I think it’s the worst thing ever especially since it just causes accidents,” said Morgan Posko.

“Tailgating, cutting you off, taking your parking spot,” said Liz Ferree. “You want a whole list?”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration cites improper lane changing, speeding and tailgating as aggressive behavior.

And then there are other things that are annoying enough to spark a little aggression themselves.

“In Maryland, the turn signals. Nobody uses the turn signals down here,” said Josh Cook.

“I say something to them sometimes, but usually you know what they do?” said Jim Simpson. “You know what finger they tell me about.”

State Farm agent Chris Duncan says that’s on the list too, along with fights for spots in parking lots. The challenge is to play nice.

“Don’t engage the aggressive driver so when that person cuts you off or cuts in front of you or gives you the middle finger or whatever it might be, don’t engage them,” Duncan said. “Let it go. Let them win. Because at the end of the day, what do you gain by engaging that person? It can’t end well.”

“Everybody’s in a rush; has somewhere to go,” said Lachelle Tatum.

“I’m old enough that everything annoys me,” said Sheldon Rudie.

The survey also found that 54 percent of drivers think men are more aggressive behind the wheel than women; 37 percent think it’s equal.

The survey polled 1,000 drivers 18 and older with valid U.S. licenses.

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