GEICO advises: don't let added holiday stress lead to aggressive driving

WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 17, 2014 – With the holidays around the corner, you might be rushing to purchase last minute gifts and make final preparations. It can all add up to additional stress, and GEICO reminds drivers to not let it turn into aggressive driving.

Aggressive Driving Defined

Often easy to spot, aggressive driving is tougher to define. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) characterizes aggressive driving as an individual committing a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property.

In terms of behavior, tailgating often gets cited as one of the most common forms of aggressive driving. It is always best to move over and let the tailgater pass, rather than jeopardizing the safety of the entire roadway.

Other forms of aggressive driving could include excessive use of the horn or dangerously throwing on the high beams, as well as any type of obscene gesture. Additionally, weaving through traffic and cutting off other vehicles, slamming on the brakes to send a message to a tailgater or intentionally blocking a passing lane are all signs of aggressive driving.

Ways to Avoid Aggressive Drivers

  • Steer clear of aggressive drivers and allow them to pass. You want to safely arrive at your destination, and reacting to someone along the way jeopardizes your goal.
  • Keep your emotions in check.
  • Take deep breaths to relax.
  • Keep a positive frame of mind.
  • Give the other driver causing an issue the benefit of the doubt.
  • Realize that everyone makes mistakes.
  • Don't take it personally when another driver causes a problem.
  • Do not make eye contact with the aggressive driver. It could lead to a physical confrontation.

If an aggressive driving situation begins to escalate to a dangerous level, dial an aggressive driving hotline such as #77 to report the incident, or call 911 if lives are in danger.

GEICO (Government Employees Insurance Company) is a member of the Berkshire Hathaway family of companies and is the second-largest private passenger auto insurance company in the United States. GEICO, which was founded in 1936, provides millions of auto insurance quotes to U.S. drivers annually. The company is pleased to serve more than 14 million private passenger customers and insures more than 23 million vehicles (auto & cycle).

Using GEICO's online service center, policyholders can purchase policies, make policy changes, report claims and print insurance ID cards. Policyholders can also connect to GEICO through the GEICO App, reach a representative over the phone or visit a GEICO local agent.

GEICO also provides insurance quotes on motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), boats, travel trailers and motorhomes (RVs). Coverage for life, homes and apartments is written by non-affiliated insurance companies and is secured through the GEICO Insurance Agency. Commercial auto insurance and personal umbrella protection are also available.

For more information, go to www.geico.com.