2013 (Toronto) - Cutting in and weaving, speeding, and hostile displays are
among the top online complaints posted by drivers, according to a new study by
the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) recently published in an
online issue of Accident Analysis and
aggression is a major safety concern and researchers estimate this behaviour is
a factor in nearly half of all motor vehicle collisions. Identifying the
underlying causes and strategies for preventing driver aggression continues to
be a priority.
Dr. Christine Wickens reviewed thousands of entries posted on RoadRagers.com, a
website that invites drivers to submit complaints about unsafe and improper
previous study evaluating complaints submitted to the Ontario Provincial
Police, Dr. Wickens turned her attention towards the crop of new websites that
ask drivers to describe the unsafe driving practices they’ve observed.
can tell us more about what people are doing out there in the real world,” she
Wickens, a post-doctoral fellow with CAMH’s Social and Epidemiological Research
Department, and her colleagues evaluated more than 5,000 entries posted on
RoadRagers.com between 1999 and 2007.
The team sorted the complaints — which consisted mostly of reports on driving
in Canada and the U.S. — into
various categories, including: speeding/racing, erratic/improper braking and
common complaints involved cutting in and weaving (54 per cent of all
complaints), speeding (29 per cent) and hostile displays (25 per cent).
research team also discussed how slighted drivers might feel compelled to
retaliate or ‘teach other drivers a lesson.’ In some extreme cases, one
reckless action can escalate into a hostile situation between multiple drivers.
step in the research will be to examine how slighted drivers perceive the
offensive actions of another motorist: Is the other driver in a rush,
negligent, or deliberately aggressive? How do these different interpretations
affect how we respond?
in mind, Dr. Wickens advises drivers to work hard at keeping cool behind the
yourself to take a deep breath, stay calm, and do whatever it takes to bring
your anger down,” she said.
Dr. Wickens also suggested that educating drivers during
their training on the most common complaints might help them realize the impact
of their actions and avoid these types of behaviours. The training could also
teach drivers to be aware of their own responses associated with
behaviours they encounter on the road.
The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) is Canada's largest mental health and addiction teaching hospital, as well as one of the world's leading research centres in its field. CAMH combines clinical care, research, education, policy development and health promotion to help transform the lives of people affected by mental health and addiction issues. CAMH is fully affiliated with the University of Toronto, and is a Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization Collaborating Centre. For more information, please visit www.camh.ca.
For more information contact: Michael Torres, CAMH Media Relations, 416-595-6015 or firstname.lastname@example.org