Simmer Down, Atlanta: Road Rage Increases Around Fourth of July

Atlanta among “most discourteous” cities for driving near summer holidays.

Atlanta among “most discourteous” cities for driving near summer holidays. Patch file.
Atlanta among “most discourteous” cities for driving near summer holidays. Patch file.

by Beth Lawton

Atlanta drivers are not very polite or patient when it comes to summer holiday driving — but they're not the worst.

The Atlanta metro ranked third in a survey of drivers across 10 large U.S. cities focusing on aggressive driving behavior. The survey, by Safeco Insurance, shows aggressive driving increases in the summer, especially around the Fourth of July holiday.

Drivers in Washington, D.C. are rated as “most discourteous” with 40 percent more likely to be rude during the holiday weekend. Such rudeness includes tailgating, using their horn and yelling or gesturing at other drivers in an aggressive manner, according to the survey. Following Washington, D.C.:

  • Boston ranked No. 2 (38 percent).
  • Atlanta ranked No. 3 (34 percent).
  • Rounding out the top five are New York and Chicago, both at 32 percent.

When Safeco Insurance did a similar survey in 2009, Atlanta ranked No. 4.

Earlier this year, Safeco Insurance launched “Drive It Forward Fridays,asking drivers to use the hashtag #DIFF to pledge to be a more courteous driver. A Safeco Insurance study in May included this question:

What actions did survey respondents say, if stopped, would help make driving more pleasant?

  • Cutting off other drivers (59 percent)
  • Using high beams toward oncoming traffic (57 percent)
  • Tailgating (56 percent)

What do you think about Atlanta-area drivers? Are they really that rude?

You can read more about the most discourteous drivers survey from Safeco Insurance here. 

Douglas McCullough July 01, 2014 at 08:57 AM
Warnin ToU's post sereves an an example as to why road rage incidents related to speeding occur. He seems to think that the freeways were made so that people who want to exceed the speed limit should have a special right to do so just because they want to and that the rest of us had best get out of the way. I wonder how it is that someone is raised to think like that. In my opinion that attitude exhibits a highly childish and pronounced selfishness. If that post reflects the way he really drives then I think it is predictable that sooner or later he will cause a crash and possibly a cripling injury to someone who is driving according to the law or maybe to himself. When that happens it will be a travesty if the injury is to anyone other than Warnin ToU. Should it be only to Warnin ToU then it will be a straight up example of the fact that decisions have consequences.
Brent Seeger July 01, 2014 at 08:58 AM
Warnin ToU lives in his mothers basement and only comments to make everyones head explode. He normally drives a big wheel and writes with a fat pencil.
broot July 01, 2014 at 09:34 AM
Sure is a relief to know I can now get off those surface streets. I was doing 90+ on them because I was afraid I would otherwise be impeding traffic on the interstate.
Brent Seeger July 01, 2014 at 02:49 PM
This is really a dumb article.
Greg Wardlaw July 01, 2014 at 05:26 PM
There seems to be two extremes here. If I am in a 70 mph zone, I expect some drivers to be going 80 and I drive in the right hand lane. However, I have observed that the faster drivers sometimes don't give the slower drivers time to get over in the right lane. However, if you are impeding traffic for some time you need to get over in the right lane. Leave the policing to the police. I try to go with the flow "so to speak" as long as I do not exceed the speed limit by more than about 7 miles per hour. Slow and fast drivers are both being selfish at times. I don't want to hold anybody up but I do expect to be given time to get over in the slow lane. I do get irritated when someone is impeding traffic in the left lane too. There are a lot of people who have nobody to drive them too and they are doing the best they can. Driving is not a contest. Driving, a lot of the time, shows what kind of person is behind the wheel. I catch myself at times being someone I do not want to be. It is all about respect and I am guilty of being disrespectful at times too. I was surprised that Boston was high on the list. I have lived in Georgia all my life and I went on a business trip to Boston a few years ago and I was pleasantly surprised that I experienced some of the most respectful drivers I have ever been around. If traffic was congested people would motion and let you merge into traffic as if it was a natural thing. I was blown away. I have to say I had a very different attitude when I left than when I arrived. It was awesome. Everybody can do better. Sometimes I have to ask myself "How important is it to be right" or "How important is it to win" on the road. As I get older I realize winning is getting home safely.


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