November 12, 2014
Irate motorists are a danger to themselves and other road users, and are usually high-risk customers for car insurance companies. The nature of driving in Nairobi especially during rush hours can wear thin even the patience of a monk. When caught between overlapping PSVs and bossy drivers, anyone can lose his cool and can start behaving differently. This is why it is important to have a strategy for handling irate drivers. Here are thoughts that can help you to deflect road rage away from yourself.
You don’t have to attend every argument you’ve been invited to
There are plenty of mindless decisions taken by drivers after spending hours in traffic. Traffic gridlocks are usually the result of several drivers trying to exit their junction at the same time forgetting that two objects cannot occupy the same space at the same time. It is not unusual for drivers to roll down their windows and to start pointing and shouting at each other as they struggle to sort this mess. Being calm, studying the situation and responding responsibly, and usually unselfishly is the best solution.
An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind
If a vehicle overlaps and they try to bully you into giving them space, a bit of defensive driving may ward them off. While this may fill you with satisfaction, it also raises your adrenaline levels and really annoys the overlapping driver. The result is a highly charged situation that is likely to result in a visit to the garage, and that dreadful call to your insurance company to discuss the price of repairs. And believe me, you never feel wise at that time. You keep asking yourself, what if I didn’t get competitive with this guy. Lets skip the part where you rear-end the car that was in front of you as you are trying to ward off an overlapper, who drives away gleefully.
Half the fun is in getting to your destination safely
There is usually very little to be gained by engaging in turf wars on the road. If you are in traffic, calmness will get you father that fighting for every inch of space ahead of you. Road dynamics are such that you all the cars adjacent to each other will tend to move at the same speed regardless of how hard the drivers work to get away from a jam. Its is completely pointless to try to get home ahead of everyone else, and only end up in the car repair shop. Put your mind on your destination, and even if you get home 5 minutes later that the road bullyies, big deal. And your motor insurance company will thank you for not making claims. You will also arrive home ina good mood.
Your horn is not a musical instrument
One of the most annoying habits that raise tension on roads is unwarranted honking. There are drivers who cannot wait for the lights to turn from amber to green, and as soon as it does, they expect you to have reached top speed. It is very annoying to have a driver honk at you from behind in traffic, or at the lights. However, you can decide to ignore the honk, or assume that it is intended for someone else. If you don’t respond to the invitation to get annoyed, then the honker will not have a subject, and is likely to cool down. This will help you to maintain you composure and will reduce your chances of ending up in an accident that will lead to calling your car insurance provider to discuss a claim.