Road Rage: How to Instantly Protect Yourself, Your Fleet, and Your Drivers

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Everyone gets annoyed on the road.

It’s one thing to get annoyed by someone overtaking you, but it’s another to rudely or even violently retaliate. 

This is road rage, labelled “one of South Africa’s biggest killers.” 

As common as it is, it shouldn’t be your reality. The solution to protecting your fleet and drivers is a fleet management system.

In this article, you will:

  • Learn what road rage is
  • Delve into the road rage figures in South Africa
  • Find out what causes road rage and how you can handle it
  • Explore how a fleet management system can help you manage road rage
  • Discover how Cartrack’s solutions are the secret weapon for combating fleet road rage

Let’s define road rage

Road rage is a term used to describe aggressive and sometimes violent road behaviour caused by irresponsible driving. Triggers include:

  • Speeding
  • Tailgating
  • Running a red light
  • Changing lanes without indicating
  • Harsh weather conditions
  • Traffic congestion

This less-than-friendly behaviour is more than just a feeling of frustration or a mean look, as it is displayed in different forms, including:

  • Yelling at other drivers
  • Making vulgar gestures
  • Physical violence

These behaviours endanger the lives of those involved and other road users. But just how common is it on South African roads? Let’s see what the stats say.

Road rage: The numbers that are still on the rise

While road rage includes yelling and vulgar gestures, it can escalate into more violent behaviour that turns into potentially dangerous, life-threatening events. Let's take a look at just how severe it can get and look at the numbers: 

SAPS' 2nd Quarter crime report (July 2023 - September 2023) indicates that road rage was responsible for about 1,272 attempted murders, 1,053 murders, and 20,686 assaults with grievous bodily harm.

Unfortunately, these numbers are still on the rise. According to the 3rd Quarter Crime Report (October 2023 - December 2023), road rage was responsible for about 1,702 attempted murders, 1,116 murders, and 27,918 assaults with grievous bodily harm.

These numbers tell us just how serious this issue is for South Africa. But what causes road rage? Let’s take a look.

What are some common causes of road rage?

While there are countless causes of road rage, let’s explore the three most common ones; traffic, weather, and aggressive driving:

  1. Traffic congestion:

    Bumper-to-bumper traffic can cause people to drive recklessly to get to their destination on time. This leads to affected motorists being frustrated and annoyed, triggering road rage.

    Look at John, for instance, who is about to miss his 12 o'clock flight because of traffic. Noticing that he might not make it to O.R. Tambo on time, he becomes impatient, leading to him constantly honking his horn, and yelling at motorists to hurry up.
  2. Weather conditions:

    Driving in harsh weather conditions can start feeling like an extreme sport, causing drivers to experience high stress levels. This stress can increase irritability, especially towards other motorists who are driving recklessly.

    Look at John again, who is now caught in a rainstorm. While he is making sure to obey all the rules of the road, someone is driving recklessly and attempts to overtake him. This leaves John feeling angry and can easily boil over into road rage.
  3. Aggressive driving:

    Aggressive driving is one of the most common causes of road rage. Being on the receiving end can leave drivers feeling angry and frustrated, causing them to retaliate.

    John is at it again. Instead of driving within the speed limit, he is speeding excessively, and changing lanes without indicating. This can lead to drivers becoming angry and potentially reacting.

This shows us that road rage is usually triggered by feeling unsafe and being inconvenienced while driving. Here’s what you can do to ensure that these actions don’t lead to road rage.


Let’s explore 7 pro tools for avoiding road rage

Feeling frustrated on the road is normal, especially when you have somewhere to be. So what steps can you take to help you avoid road rage? Let’s find out.

  1. Drive safely:

    Cutting off drivers, driving in and out of lanes, and forcing yourself in front of another vehicle with the nose of your vehicle are irresponsible driving behaviours that trigger road rage.
  2. Don’t tailgate:

    Tailgating leads to a 13%-14% increase in the risk of being in a car crash compared to safe driving, and it makes drivers appear impatient, a common trigger for road rage.
  3. Avoid speeding:

    Exceeding road speed limits, especially during harsh weather conditions, can provoke feelings of anger and frustration in other drivers, leading to road rage.
  4. Plan your trips:

    Planning trips can reduce stress, giving you extra time for potential delays and helping you stay calm while driving.
  5. Don’t engage with angry drivers:

    Don’t pull that finger out to respond to angry drivers. Instead, get away from the situation as quickly and safely as possible.
  6. Don’t drink and drive:

    Alcohol makes you irritable and short-tempered, making you more likely to behave aggressively behind the wheel and increasing the risk of road rage.
  7. Watch out for the “L”:

    Be patient with learner drivers not wanting to drive fast, as they are already anxious on the road, and your impatience can cause road rage.

While these may not completely protect you from road rage, they can significantly lower the chances of it affecting you. But, what if you’re the one expressing road rage?

What if you are the one exhibiting road rage?

While being on the receiving end of road rage requires you to simply disengage, what happens if you’re the one exhibiting road rage? Let’s go through a few tips that can help you:

  • Breathe deeply:

    Road rage causes heightened tension, which breathing exercises can help relieve. The more oxygen your blood has, the easier it is to calm down and feel more relaxed after experiencing road rage.
  • Stay in your lane:

    Focus on your journey instead of responding to other drivers, as this can escalate the situation and make it take a potentially dangerous turn.
  • Get a fleet management system:

    Preparation is better than reaction, and a fleet management system can help you and your drivers stay proactive. By helping you spot dangerous and distracted driver behaviour, this system is the perfect tool for keeping you and your drivers safe from road rage.

But what exactly is a fleet management system? How does it work, and can it help you prevent road rage? Let’s find out

What is a fleet management system?

A fleet management system is your one-stop tool for managing multiple vehicles. It helps you keep track of all driver activities, ranging from where they are in real-time to whether they’re practicing safe driving. Think of it as your eyes and ears, from anywhere, anytime, at the tap of a screen. But what role does it play in preventing road rage?

Fleet management can be the miracle pill for your fleet’s road rage

The power of a fleet management system lies in its ability to promote safer driving practices. Let’s see exactly how this next-level technology does this:

  1. Driver behaviour monitoring:

    The root of road rage is dangerous driver behaviour. If you’re managing or are responsible for multiple vehicles, you can’t be in the passenger seat of each of them at all times to monitor driver behaviour. This is where a fleet management system comes in, equipping you with solutions that help you detect and prevent harsh driver behaviour.
  2. Recorded video footage:

    Road rage can lead to costly accidents, and in the unfortunate event that this does happen, and your drivers aren’t at fault, you can use recorded footage to help prove their innocence. Having access to the exact footage you need helps you defend your drivers from any false claims to support exoneration.
  3. Real-time analytics:

    Road rage can quickly spiral into a potentially dangerous accident. Should this happen, and your drivers were not responsible for it, a fleet management system can help you see exactly where your drivers were and how they drove. This protects your drivers from false claims and legal costs that you may incur due to road accidents.
  4. Route optimisation:

    As we looked at earlier, traffic congestion is one of the major causes of road rage. When your drivers are short on time and delivery is about to be late, tension begins to rise, which can lead to them driving dangerously to not miss their delivery deadlines. Our route optimisation feature looks at all the tasks your drivers need to complete, and finds the best order to complete them in the most efficient, time-saving way. With a tool like this, your drivers are less likely to end up in situations that may lead to road rage and dangerous driving.
  5. Advanded Driver Assistance Systems:

    We’ve established that tailgating is another major cause of road rage, and a fleet management tools can help eliminate this too. This system makes use of smart technology to inform drivers of any obstacles or vehicles that they are tailgating.

Sounds incredible, right? We have the key to activating these benefits for your fleet; it’s Cartrack’s world-class fleet management system.


Avoid distressing and profit-draining accidents by keeping your fleet road rage-free with Cartrack Singapore

If you’re tired of road rage running rampant in your fleet, then you need a fleet management system, and who better to give this to you than Cartrack Singapore? Let’s see what features make us the ideal choice for your fleet:

  • AI Live Vision cameras:

    Bid distracted and dangerous driving farewell with Cartrack’s AI Live Vision cameras. Powered by artificial intelligence (AI), this cloud-connected management solution uses in-cabin cameras to continuously monitor driver behaviour. This enables it to detect different forms of distracted driving, including:

    - Cellphone use
    - Smoking
    - Yawning and other telltale signs of fatigue

    But this solution does more than just monitor the behaviour, it also triggers in-cabin audible alerts, immediately notifying your drivers and allowing them to correct their behaviour in real-time. Distracted driving plays a massive role in road rage, and our high-tech solution helps eliminate it.
  • ADAS:

    Keep your drivers completely aware of their surroundings with our Advanced Driver Assistance System. Powered by camera-based sensors, intelligent algorithms, and AI, ADAS takes on a preventative approach to driver safety. One way it does this is by monitoring the distance between vehicles to help your drivers maintain a safe following distance. By providing your drivers with real-time alerts when they drive dangerously close to another vehicle, this system can help prevent tailgating, a major contributing factor to road rage.
  • Driver scorecards:

    Monitor individual driver behaviour with our driver scorecards. These offer comprehensive ways to evaluate driver performance in great detail and rate each driver on how safely they drive. By monitoring high-risk behaviours that can lead to road rage in your drivers, you can provide specific training to improve driver behaviour behind the wheel, subsequently decreasing the risk of road rage. These behaviours include:

    - Excessive speeding
    - Harsh braking and cornering
    - Reckless acceleration
  • Route optimisation through Delivery:

    Streamline your delivery options with the most efficient routes brought to you by our Delivery solution. If you’re in the business of delivering goods, then you understand the impact late deliveries can have on your fleet’s reputation and productivity.

    Running late can cause drivers to behave irresponsibly in trying to meet their delivery deadline, like speeding, turning harshly, and running red lights. These behaviours can trigger road rage in other motorists. With our Delivery app, you can help put a stop to this, helping you identify the most efficient order to complete all your delivery tasks. This helps you keep your delivery operations running on time with little to no delays.
  • Real-time GPS tracking:

    If you’re not running a business, you can still rely on our technology to help you avoid road rage by gaining full visibility of your vehicle with Cartrack’s live GPS tracking.

    The beauty of our GPS tracking software is that it does more than track your vehicle; it gives you full access to your trip history with a route replay function, helping you spot instances of risky driving. With this information, you can pinpoint behaviours that trigger road rage, helping you stay safe and responsible on the road.

These solutions can help you give your drivers ultimate road rage protection by helping foster a culture of safety and responsible driving. Let’s see what the experts have to say about this, and what other tips can they give you for your operation?

Let’s hear some tips from the fleet experts themselves

Although you have a fleet management system, it doesn’t take away from your general responsibilities as a motorist to be as safe as possible on the road. We’ve got your back, though, because we’re bringing you some road rage tips from one of our experienced Cartrack branch managers:

  • Always leave for your destination early. By allowing for enough travel time that takes traffic and other delays into account, you can keep calm knowing that there is no need to rush.
  • Plan your routes. By knowing exactly which route you will be taking, you can avoid any delays that can trigger road rage.
  • Play your favourite music, as this can help you remain calm.
  • Always remain calm and courteous, and don’t get provoked when you encounter drivers with road rage. Allow them to pass and avoid eye contact.
  • When you encounter a road rage incident, do not sound your horn, flash your lights, or start gesturing.
  • If you are a victim of road rage and want to report the matter to the SAPS, record the aggressor registration and the location of the incident.

Safeguard your fleet and its drivers from road rage with Cartrack’s solutions

With a wide range of solutions to tackle nearly every cause of road rage, Cartrack Singapore is just what the road rage doctor ordered for your fleet safety needs. 

Contact us today and make road rage a thing of the past.

Speeding or tailgating can be frustrating, but shouldn’t boil over into road rage. Learn more about its dangers and how you can protect yourself and your fleet.