8 Ways To Avoid Road Rage

11/01/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated Nov 17, 2011

Someone got cut off. They bleeped their horn. You bleeped back. They gesticulated, you gesticulated.

And now you're stuck with a lunatic on your back, tailgating and swerving, keeping up with you with a crazy grimace on his face and trying his best to force you off the road.

Whoa there. Not everybody lives in Orange County, California, or Miami, Florida.

And maybe you're the lunatic, who knows?

Or perhaps you take a more considered path of action. We've chosen eight often overlooked defensive driving tips that hopefully will help ensure situations like this one don't develop, and which come with the added bonus of avoiding an expensive insurance payment or minimizing the risks of injury or death in a serious crash.

Tip 1: Don't do unto others

So the crazy-driver pursuit is unlikely to occur, but remonstrating with another driver can not only prove dangerous to your health and well being -- remember you may be inflaming a road-rage situation -- but perhaps more crucially, it distracts a driver for a split second or longer. The entire event could adversely affect their driving for the rest of the day.

Remember: Don't take it out on others. And though I usually don't subscribe to the fractured logic of bumper stickers -- mean people, and in particular mean drivers, really do suck.

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