Police caution against aggressive driving in Great Falls
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Reporting for KRTV
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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that there nearly seven million car crashes each year in the US. They also say a substantial number of those crashes are due to aggressive driving, which sometimes can lead to "road rage" - a situation where drivers explode with anger and endanger other lives.
Aggressive driving is defined as the operation of a motor vehicle in a manner that endangers or is likely to endanger persons or property, and it's likely we see someone committing the offense everyday.
Sergeant Jeff Newton of the Great Falls Police Department elaborated, "People exceeding the speed limit unreasonably, fast lane changes, not using their signals, cutting people off, following too closely, those sort of things."
Police say the crime is often the cause of car wrecks, and those who do it put everyone at risk.
Newton continued, "They endanger other people on the streets whether by potential accidents, placing pedestrians in danger, so on. Aggressive driving could be a contributing factor to other problems."
Construction workers say that they likely see stressed-out and upset motorists more than most people, and it can put their lives in danger.
Ray Krenik, a traffic signal technician with the city, explained, "Mostly, what we see is people who don't obey our traffic control. They go around traffic control. We've had had several incidents where people have almost been hit."
Police say they take this behavior seriously, and while there isn't a specific ticket for the infraction, officers can hit offenders with other fines, said Newton: "Aggressive driving isn't in itself an offense, it's all things associated with it that are contributing factors toward the aggressive driving that constitute a violation."
Driving dangerously probably won't get you to where you need to be much quicker, but it could seriously injure or kill someone.
Krenik concluded, "Just be careful because we all want to come home and see our families at night, and we want them to get where they're going safely. That's what our job is for."
So the next time you grab those keys, make sure you are calm and cautious of those around you, and of course, don't forget to buckle up.