Ask any driver in Maryland what they consider to be the worst problem facing them on the roads today, and you may be surprised by the answer.

Sure, many will launch into a discourse on never-ending road construction or the increasing congestion that contributes to long commutes.

However, the majority of drivers in our state see aggressive driving as the biggest problem on Maryland highways - even above drunk driving.

Tailgating, constantly changing lanes, running red lights, and speeding contribute to the number of Rockville car accidents each year.

Of course, issues such as road construction, congestion and long commutes only aggravate the situation, creating still more aggressive drivers. Statistics show that congestion in Maryland and the surrounding states is second only to Los Angeles.

As drivers get frustrated and lose their patience on the road, the number of Maryland aggressive driving incidents is becoming an increasingly dangerous problem.

In fact, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. have partnered together to form the Smooth Operator Program. This public safety program is intended to raise awareness of aggressive driving, help law enforcement officials crack down on the number of incidents, and educate drivers on how to avoid becoming aggressive drivers themselves.

An annual report done in combination with the program states that 40 percent of all traffic fatalities in Maryland in 2009 were due to aggressive driving. In 2008, Maryland reported more than 6,100 crashes due to aggressive driving. Speed is the most common culprit, and male drivers ages 18 to 34 are the most common offenders.

Those statistics don't even count the more serious offense of road rage. While aggressive driving in Rockville and surrounding cities is considered a traffic offense, road rage is a more serious criminal offense and therefore tallied separately.

Both aggressive driving and road rage are serious problems on Rockville roads today. If you or someone you love has been hurt in an accident due to aggressive driving, you have the right to demand compensation from the offender.

To talk to an experienced Rockville accident attorney who can help you regain control of your life, call Nickelsporn & Lundin at 1-800-875-9700 today.

To avoid aggressive drivers in the future, follow these tips, courtesy of the Smooth Operator Program:
  • Get out of their way.
  • Stay relaxed.
  • Don't challenge them. Avoid eye contact and ignore any rude gestures.
  • Give them the benefit of the doubt. They may not be intentionally driving aggressively.
  • Don't block the passing lane.
  • When possible, call the police to report aggressive drivers.