The dangers of driving under the influence of anger

Published: 04/04/2012

They say you should never go to bed angry; the same can be said for driving as the death of Alan Meeking highlights.

Mr Meeking, 49, died in a road traffic accident after an argument with his wife, Caroline, led to her pulling on the vehicle’s handbrake, she claimed in an attempt to slow the car down and allow her to get out. The car however was sent into a spin before colliding with an oncoming vehicle. Mr Meeking was declared dead at the scene.

Arguing behind the wheel can be just as dangerous as using a mobile phone as it distracts the driver. According to the Department of Transport’s Annual Report 2010, around 3000 road traffic accidents occurred because the driver was distracted.

Driving while angry can also cause the driver to drive at a faster speed. The same report reported 5836 accidents were down to drivers exceeding the speed limit, while aggressive driving contributed to 3862 accidents in 2010.

Arguments tend to bring out the worst in us, causing us to say things we don’t really mean. While harsh words can hurt, they can have a much more devastating effect if spoken behind the wheel. As is the rule with mobile phones, save it until you get home!

Content correct at time of publication

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