Dealing with Tailgaters
Tailgaters, there are several reasons to dislike them. I believe
lumping all reasons into one, the keyword would be:
Before listing tips on how to deal with it you should know some important
facts. A 10 months survey was done on thousands of lane changes by NHTSA*.
They found the average lane change occurred every 2.8 miles on average.
83% of the time the vehicle changed just one lane, and there was not one
accident reported from any of the lane changes. 91% were considered to be
safe. The number one reason people changed lanes accounted for 37% of all
of the lane changes. The reason we change lanes 37% of the time is
because we are trying to get around a slow lead car. I like to call these
people knuckle draggers. Now we know why many people tailgate, lets look at
ways to avoid it.
- Pay Attention.
- Be ready and willing to move out of the way. This
rule will eliminate tailgaters, at least for you.
- Be willing to speed up to create a clearance. Your
job is not to block tailgaters. Creating a problem for tailgaters by
slowing down creates a problem for other responsible drivers behind you.
- Do not use hand jesters. By using them you will most
likely only close the gap between your rear bumper and their front.
- Do not brake. Tempting, but really the best thing to
do is just simply move out of the way. You will forget him, and
braking only enrages them.
A few things I firmly believe in in regards to tailgating:
- Move out of the way.
- Tailgating and rude jesters rarely occur when you drive in the slow
lane. You allow fasters vehicles room to pass.
- If you are getting passed on the right you are in the wrong lane.
- By increasing the space between you and the driver in front of you to
5-10 car lengths can eliminate 75% of all your driving frustration.
It's hard to hate someone so far away.
* Information provided by the National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration