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ROAD RAGE!!!!!

Ninety percent of drivers report witnessing or being a part of road rage, and according to Road and Travel, there are more surprising statistics: males are more susceptible to road rage than women (54% to 46%), drivers age 18-24 are more than drivers 65 and older (67% to 30%), and get this drivers with children more than drivers without (59% to 44%). If you use a cell phone while driving, your chances of raging on the roads are higher than if you were to drive unencumbered (59% to 39%). At a glance, statistics look like stress is the catalytic variable, but other studies have shown there may be other contributing factors.



A study at Cairo University and reported by Science Daily showed that rats exposed to fuel vapors, like exhaust emission, showed higher levels of aggression than those exposed only to clean air. The study reports that rats exposed to gas fumes showed "more time spent in belligerent postures and increased numbers of actual attacks." The study went on to report that increased exposure to both leaded and unleaded gasoline vapors showed "significant fluctuations in neurotransmitters in the hypothalamus, hippocampus, and cerebellum" causing these aggressive behaviors. Think about that the next time you and your buddies want to go huffing.

Other research has indicated that regardless of race, sex, religion or stress, contributing factors may lie within the individual. Scientific American reports that studies of people with a low tolerance for dealing with frustration, people with anti-social tendencies, and people with low or no ability to control themselves are no different in feeling anger toward other drivers, they just lack the ability to stop themselves from acting out. The study also reports that people with "road rage problems" tend to see the poor driving habits of others as a personal insult or disrespect to their own self-esteem, "rather than attributing those behaviors to the other drivers carelessness or recklessness." Its a good point to consider. Next time someone cuts you off, think about whether that driver actually knows who you are, is targeting you for affront, or is just a dumbass behind the wheel.

While no real records of road rage are kept, or realistically possible to keep, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that one-third of all traffic accidents are due to aggressive driving, and that two-thirds of all those fatal occur for the same reason. Keep that in mind the next time your foot hits the gas, trying to catch up to that fool who nearly clipped you changing lanes, didnt stop like he or she was supposed to, or rode you for nearly a mile or two. Just breathe for a moment and dont let the fumes get to you, or do you want to be a statistic???????

 

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