ODESSA, Texas (Nexstar) – The basin is no stranger to dangerous motorists.
“It’s crazy here,” laughs driver Joe Tarango.
“There are signs, ‘Stop dying.’ The way people drive, it will never stop,” said driver Ron Hartung.
“There is rage on the road. There was an overturned truck. You know, people whose sheets made them dead and didn’t make it past the wreck,” said driver Tim Baxter.
Sharing the road with other aggressive drivers can be a tormenting experience. It seems that for some drivers, their vision turns red.
So what exactly is road rage?
Primo, another driver, said: “It was honking, cursing you, something you did. “But to be honest, it’s a generation of young drivers that don’t have the close friendships or respect of passersby like the old schoolboys.”
Josh Zuber works with AAA of Texas. Zuber says that there are many physical actions and reactions, which can form road rage.
“Swearing, rude or obscene gestures, throwing objects, crashing other cars, swerving, forcing drivers to cross the road,” said Zuber. “Even use your headlights or brakes to punish other drivers.”
The latest data from AAA shows that nearly 80% of drivers have exhibited some form of aggression behind the wheel at least once in the past 30 days.
There have been a number of cases raging on the road recently and alarmingly.
A Miami driver was caught on his own dash cam making multiple turns through his windshield on the highway. The incident happened after another driver threw a bottle at his car. The driver is currently facing felony charges.
In San Diego, a college student captured another man flying in a rage as the two merge onto a highway. Anger seemed to flare as the student honked at the man for cutting him off. The man followed the student and pointed a gun at him. But he didn’t shoot.
In Odessa, OPD arrested 38-year-old Victor Gonzales for murder in October. It was a tragic case of road rage. According to a probable cause affidavit, Gonzales followed the victim into a DK gas station on Tanglewood Road. Court documents say Gonzales told officers he hit the victim, Ross Walker, in the head because Walker had nearly hit Gonzales on the street, moments before.
“Road rage is something we react to all the time. Corporal Steve LeSueur of the Odessa Police Department said we always receive calls regarding road rage. “By the time we got there, one or both sides were gone.”
Angry situations on the road happen quickly. In the heat of the moment, it can be hard to get out of a stressful and aggravating situation.
But Cpl. LeSueur says a quick way to de-escalate a confrontation is to completely opt out.
Best advice: get the offending driver’s license plate and call 911.
But what if the other driver follows you?
“If someone is chasing you and following you, go to the police station. Call 911 and tell the dispatcher, ‘Hey, I’m on my way to the police station.’ That also happens a little bit,” said Cpl. LeSueur said.
If a road raging incident is reported, investigators will look for evidence. Surveillance footage can be very helpful. Dash cams are often credited with helping with cases.
https://www.yourbasin.com/news/local-news/road-rage-dealing-with-aggressive-drivers/ Road Rage: Dealing with Aggressive Drivers