Being a professional truck driver is rewarding, but it can just as easily be considered one of the most frustrating fields you can pursue. If you’re a seasoned truck driver, you must have lost count of all the situations where you’ve faced aggressive drivers and felt road rage. Whether it is because of indecisive drivers on the highway who can’t pick a lane, tailgating, or being cut off, you will face countless upsetting situations that can be especially dangerous when you’re behind the wheel of a massive rig.
It’s important not to give in to your rage and anger when facing such situations. Reacting poorly to such situations can be dangerous for you and other motorists on the road. We’ve created this post to share a few simple but crucial tips on dealing with road rage situations you might face on the open road.
Tips on Dealing with Road Rage for Truck Drivers
Facing aggressive and reckless drivers is upsetting for anyone. But it can be particularly bad for semi-truck drivers to deal with. Massive rigs are not easy to maneuver and impossible to stop at short notice due to the weight of their cargo. Practicing safe driving is always the best way to avoid facing such situations, but you cannot keep avoiding them forever.
Suppose you’ve done your best to avoid getting into road rage situations but come across a stubborn driver forcing the issue. In that case, try following these three tips to avoid road rage.
1. Take a Step Back
Do not entertain any aggressive drivers around your vehicle. Engaging a reckless driver will only make matters worse. Reacting to aggressive drivers can lead to violence. You might feel tempted to show some gestures to express how you feel or honk at them.
We recommend ignoring such drivers completely — don’t even make eye contact with them. Give the driver more space, no matter how much your instincts tell you to speed past them. Remember that teaching the other driver a lesson is not your responsibility. It’s best to avoid any incident.
2. Try to Relax and Take a Deep Breath
You might still be fuming after backing off. It’s completely natural to feel that way, especially after someone pulled off a dangerous maneuver. It is better to stop thinking about the situation and distract yourself with something that makes you feel better.
Try playing some of your favorite songs and try to calm yourself. If you are struggling to stay calm and the thoughts about the aggressive driver keep replaying in your head, we recommend pulling over at the next truck stop and taking a few minutes before heading out.
3. Practice Empathy
It’s difficult to put yourself in someone else’s shoes after they cut you off, but it can work wonders in helping you stay calm in road rage situations. Take a moment to think that perhaps the aggressive motorist is driving this way because something bad might have happened that day to them.
Give them the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps they are driving fast to tend to an emergency or are late to work. Taking their behavior personally will not help. It will only make you feel mad. Remind yourself that they are only human, try to forgive them, and focus on the journey ahead.
Safety is a Core Value at S.T.I. Trans
At S.T.I. Trans, we regard safety as one of our team’s core qualities. We hope these tips on dealing with road rage situations help you throughout your career. And if you’re an experienced truck driver looking for a great job opportunity in a team of experienced professionals, consider contacting us. We’d love to discuss how you can become part of the S.T.I. Trans family.