BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A new report shows that instead of backing off or pulling over, drivers are pulling weapons.
It can happen anywhere. New numbers show there is a nationwide spike in the number of people bringing out their guns to deal with road rage.
The sounds of danger on the roads are changing, as a new report by ‘The Trace’ shows drivers are laying off the horn, and – in a violent trend – are pulling guns on their fellow road warriors.
This is a potentially deadly response to an already dangerous problem.
In November of last year, police say road rage on 295 near Glen Burnie did turn into gunfire, sending one man to the hospital.
That is just one example of the more than 1,300 road rage incidents involving guns reported nationwide between 2014 and 2016.
Of those, 146 were in Florida alone.
“Florida also has the highest number of concealed carry permit holders,” said James Burnett, editorial director at The Trace.
But it can, and does happen everywhere.
“We encounter this kind of behavior daily,” said one Maryland State Police spokesperson.
Traffic experts say no one is safe and everyone is responsible, with the majority of drivers confessing to getting aggressive behind the wheel at some point.
Drivers tell WJZ’s Kimberly Eiten, that as road rage ramps up, so does their fear of it unfolding while they’re stuck behind the wheel.
“I worry about it quite often actually,” said driver Beth Twomey. “It has very much scared me, so I tend to back up and remove myself from being in the middle of it.”
State Police say the best way to handle it is to back off, calm down, and call for help.
In 2016 alone, there were 620 gun involved road rage incidents. That’s more than double the numbers from two years ago.