While you may be aware of the risks of driving distractions such as texting or using a cell phone, operating a vehicle when overcome with emotion can also be a dangerous condition. When a driver is upset, his or her focus and judgment can be impaired and lead to collisions. Here are some considerations about how stressed driving can cause accidents:
Stressed Driving Distractions
There are several ways in which a driver can become stressed. For instance, getting into a traffic jam when you are late for work or an appointment or being cut off or treated discourteously by another driver will spark anger and tension in most people. Stress may also be come up while you are driving because of an upsetting phone call or an argument with your passenger. You could also be upset because of something which happened before you got behind the wheel such as a fight with your spouse or getting distressing news. When you are in an aggravated state it can be easy to drive too fast, run red lights, and fail to watch out for other drivers.
Consequences of Stressed Driving
One of the most common ways in which negative emotions can impair your driving is by causing you to be overly aggressive. You could end up tailgating or having a hostile and potentially volatile exchange with another driver. Another way feeling stressed could cause problems is by distracting your attention. When you are not fully present while driving this could lead to drifting into another lane, running a stop light or sign, or even hitting another car.
Managing Your Stress
If you notice you are experiencing intense negative emotions while driving take a moment and acknowledge you are distressed. If you are able, pull over and take a few deep breaths. You might want to call someone can help you calm down. You could also listen to a relaxation exercises on your phone or car stereo system. By choosing to take a moment to acknowledge your frustration and decompress, you can regain control of your feelings and the situation. Be aware of your state of mind and wait until you feel calm before getting back on the road.
Stressed or emotional drivers can be dangerous to themselves and others on the road. If you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident which concerns stressed driving, we have experienced attorneys who are ready to help you determine out your next steps. Please contact us to schedule a free consultation. We invite you to learn more about our firm here.