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Road rage rates skyrocket

On Behalf of | May 11, 2022 | Criminal Defense, Criminal Law |

It has been a tense couple of years as Coloradans deal with unprecedented challenges. One notable impact has been the increasing number of reckless drivers on the road, which led to a much higher rate of injuries and deaths. This is due to drivers speeding, doing unsafe lane changes and other reckless acts, but the roads are also now more dangerous because of gun-related road rage. According to one news report, Colorado is the second-deadliest state for road rage.

Road rage is not an official statistic in many states, including Colorado, and it is hard to track, but many drivers experience it or catch themselves exhibiting the behavior. It can come from getting frustrated by the increased traffic volumes as we come out of the pandemic, and it could be frustration with other drivers who do not follow the written or unwritten laws of the road. Rather than drivers yelling or gesturing at each other, there is an increased incidence of drivers brandishing a gun at other drivers, which can escalate the situation.

Time to take a breath

Gun owners have the right to protect themselves from threats, but using or threatening to use a weapon can be a crime. Here are some sensible tips for avoiding charges:

  • Do not carry your gun in the vehicle unless you go hunting or to the range.
  • If you have a gun in the vehicle, pack it in the back or out of reach.
  • Do not respond to angry drivers with angry behavior of your own.
  • Keep your distance from the angry driver without endangering others.
  • Stay in your vehicle with windows up and doors locked.
  • Call 911 or the police if the situation escalates.

Defend yourself in court

Rather than pulling a gun on an aggressive driver, it is better to follow the above advice. However, they may have been a dangerous threat where action was needed. Those who defend themselves must also protect their rights in court. They can do this with the help of a knowledgeable defense attorney who understands gun laws here in Colorado.