I live in the DC, Maryland, and Virginia area where tailgating is rampant. I cannot get on a highway or even hug the slow lane anymore without someone getting up on my rear. It is so bad that everyone has stopped caring and the lead-foot is the norm.
Which is absolutely ridiculous. Death by car is one the leading killers in America. Injuries from car accidents are in the millions each year. I once had a cop tell me that cars are killing machines and everyone has one. He then went on to tell me the ridiculous things people do in these killing machines, like reading newspapers, shaving, putting on make-up, texting.
I grew up in California where tailgating is a crime and the community hates it. We don’t let tailgating happen and if you do it pisses us off. We’re serious too, with regular shootings, beatings, and threats. Many Californians actually keep guns and bats in their car for this very reason. It is considered a battlefield out there.
I know it sounds ridiculous but at least it is honest. It keeps us all well aware of the dangers of driving. Out here on the East Coast there is no justice. Everybody does it, nobody cares, and people pretend like it isn’t a problem.The end result is the worst drivers dominate the roads and all of us are in danger.
I say we fight back and get angry. The tailgaters own the road. They have even taken away the concept of a “slow lane” or a “passing lane”. At this point there is no allowance for safe driving.
Sometimes the only way to stop a bully is to stand up for yourself.
My favorite maneuver is to just stop accelerating. Make the tailgater brake and brake until they eventually get pissed off and go around. Sometimes I try the random unnecessary braking or I tap the brake several times. Hell, sometimes I do all three.
A few other points. Most tailgaters seem to be lone drivers. I rarely see someone acting this stupid and dangerous with another person in the car.
For those of you who are tailgaters, stop it right now!
Follow the three second rule. Or, the car length rule (one car length for every 10 mph, so at 60 mph it’s 6 car lengths of space between you and the care in front of you). Either way, remember:
Tailgating Is A Crime!