Ask Mike: What should you do if you are being tailgated?

About a month ago, my kids and I were on our way home from dinner at a friends house. About 10 minutes into our drive home a car approached my rear very fast and very aggressively. Mind you I was in the right lane, going a couple of miles over the speed limit. 

I always get nervous when someone becomes aggressive when driving, especially when I have my kids in the car. Not only was this driver right on my rear, but he was honking his horn and making some not so lovely gestures. I was getting pretty nervous, so I slowed down even more (because the left lane was wide open) and patiently waited for him to pass me. 

So Mike, What would you do in this situation? 

Mike: “The best thing to do is to slow down and let the tailgater pass. Don’t slow drastically, ease up on the gas and you’ll slow slightly: this way you will be easier to pass.” Also, if the tailgater becomes more aggressive and continues to harass you, I tell folks NOT to go to a police station because there can be a time that no one is at the station as they are out patrolling. This frequently happens in small towns.  So instead, I suggest heading to the emergency room at a hospital because there is always someone there. Hope this helps and please remember to still, drive safe and ride safely.”

This information comes from our Parent Taught Driver Education curriculum. To learn more about it, click here! 

2 Comments

  • Bruce Parker October 9, 2018

    Turn on 4 way flashers.
    Go to any populated well lighted space.
    Wish for a roundabout.
    How likely is it the tailgating driver mistook the front driver for another,
    or that the first driver might have engaged in an unintended slight?
    Still, avoidance of conflict in a clean well-lighted populated site is a good idea.

    • Jayne Ubl October 9, 2018

      Bruce, Thanks for your comment in regards to avoiding a tailgater (or aggressive driver). Avoidance of conflict is always the good idea as well. We always appreciate conversations with other drivers working to create safer roads. :}

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