Irish comedian Dylan Moran put it so well – people will apologise profusely if they accidentally bump into one another when walking down the street, but the slightest indiscretion while driving in a car turns people into raging homicidal maniacs. Whatever the reasons for road rage, as a motorcycle rider you’re in a far more vulnerable position than a car driver – yet that doesn’t stop many riders participating in road rage. Just remember, you won’t win in a confrontation with a car. Ever.
Thanks to the ever increasing usage of cameras while riding, we’re seeing more and more examples of car on bike road rage (and bike on car rage, too). No doubt these were happening well before the invention of action cameras, although some blame can lay at the feet or certain Moto Vloggers who get their kicks (and subsequent subscribers) out of intentionally annoying fellow motorists. But regardless of how a road rage incident starts, you as the motorcycle rider should always be the one to stop it.
Road rage has often ended in death for people and it’s usually when the to aggrieved parties get out and confront each other. Strangely when a car and a motorcycle is involved, some car drivers feel emboldened to attempt to run riders of the road despite the fact that when a motorcyclist crashes their chance of serious injury or death is many times greater than someone inside a steel safety cell.
What drives people to do this? Blame Obama, chem-trails or Monsanto. Whatever the case, you, as a rider need to take the high ground. And as hard as it can be to swallow your tongue if you’ve been wronged, your ego is far less important than getting home safely to your loved ones. Here’s a few recent examples of how not to react when it comes to road rage:
Here we have an example of a motorist who for whatever reason feels like they are endowed with the power to intervene when motorcycle riders drive like morons. Yes, the riders are riding like idiots, but that still doesn’t justify a member of the public attempting what could be described as attempted homicide at various points. It culminates in a fist fight and the driver’s spouse pulling out a gun. Yay.
This video is all sorts of bad. You’ve got the car driver who seems to be driving while on some form of drugs, with a rider endangering not only himself but everyone else with his riding. Yes, your eyes don’t deceive you, he actually does ride on the wrong side of the road to get away from the car driver. Instead of pulling over and either going the other way or waiting for the car driver to leave, he decides to carry on, albeit in a way that could have ended up with him dead.
Here’s my favourite as it involves rednecks and a motorcyclist approaching them to ask what’s going on. Here is perhaps how the rider thought things were going to go in his head before you spoke to them:
Rider: Hey there sir, what seems to be the problem?
Redneck: I don’t like the way you’re riding.
Rider: Well sir, I don’t think we were doing anything wrong. Could you perhaps relax a little and we’ll all carry on our way?
Redneck: Why I do believe you’re correct. I do apologise for my misconduct. Have a lovely day, God bless!
The above has never happened in a road rage incident and never well. Don’t approach people as you won’t convince them of anything. Just carry on and forget it happened.
Always remember you’re a sack of meat riding a fairly lightweight machine up against two tons of aluminium and steal. You may be technically in the right, you may be morally in the right but that won’t mean anything if you end up in the hospital, or worse. Smile and wave boys, smile and wave…