Driving – it can turn the most mild-mannered individual into a seething ball of fury. Perhaps it's our increasingly congested roads, or our ever-quickening pace of life, or the fact that road rage seems to breed yet more road rage.
Whatever it is, we can take it far more personally than it was intended. That person cut ME off; he/she wanted to ruin MY morning by failing to notice the lights had turned green.
That said, there are usually some understandable triggers for our anger.
Here are 10 pet peeves that you just might recognise...
When someone overtakes you and then maintains your speed. Did they just need to get in front of you to 'win'?
On the flipside, drivers who exceed the speed limit are a danger to themselves and everyone around them. Reducing speed or stopping in an emergency is a lot harder at 100mph.
Those people who text, check their hair, fix their makeup, maybe even change clothes … aren't they annoying? Not to mention dangerous. In some ways, the modern car has become an extension of a person's home – but indulging in such activities makes it much harder to concentrate on the road. From March 1st 2017, the penalty for using a mobile phone behind the wheel is £200 and six penalty points. New drivers who commit this offence within two years of passing their test will lose their licence.
If you're ticking along at 70 and then a little hatchback pootles onto the motorway at 40mph, it can be a little aggravating – and somewhat dangerous.
Conversely to the above point, if traffic is too fast and/or too heavy to merge with a motorway, the blood pressure can seriously rise. Why can’t they just let you on?
It feels intrusive and most annoying – and it can be very dangerous if you have to reduce speed suddenly. A 2-second gap should be maintained between all vehicles in order to give enough stopping time – and to avoid winding folks up! Since 2013 UK police have had the power to give on-the-spot penalties to careless drivers – which includes tailgating and middle-lane hogging.
In an ironic counterpoint to the above issue, driving too slowly can encourage tailgating. In order to keep the traffic flowing and people’s road rage locked up, it's a good idea to keep to the limit.
This is motorway driving 101: those who want to cruise at lower speeds should keep in the left lane.
When a driver turns into your lane and then maintains a lower speed than you, forcing you to use your brakes. If they had no intention of driving at the speed limit, couldn’t they have waited a few seconds more for you to pass?
It’s an oldie but a goldie. We share the roads, so we have to communicate our intentions clearly to stay safe. One of the most important forms of this communication is early use of signals. And let's not get started on those who don't use them at all...
What bad driving habits annoy you the most? Let us know in the comments section.