According to a new report conducted by the Canadian Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), aggressive drivers have a greater risk of being in an auto accident than drivers who have their emotions under control while behind the wheel.
According to survey results, nearly one third of Ontario drivers reported acts of minor aggression while behind the wheel. Those who reported making threats and attempting or succeeding in causing damage to another vehicle or individual had a 78 per cent higher chance of being involved in an accident than those who admitted to minor aggression.
The lead author on the study, Dr. Christine Wickens, noted that drivers who show even minor aggression like cursing, yelling at other people or gesturing in a rude manner can heighten the chances of a collision.
Important Study Findings
Less than eight per cent of Ontario drivers reported being involved in a car accident the previous year. Researchers analyzed this group of data based on drivers’ reports of aggressive behaviour.
The report surveyed 12,830 people from 2002 to 2009. Findings were taken from the CAMH Monitor, an Ontario survey of mental health and risky behaviours. To date, this study is the largest of its kind to evaluate this link.
According to Dr. Wickens, the study revealed a striking correlation between aggression and car crashes. Those who reported no aggression had the lowest chance of being involved in an accident, while the risk increased for those with minor aggression and was greatest for those who reported more serious aggression.
Dr. Wickens noted that angry drivers may have a greater chance of being involved in a collision because they are driving more aggressively or their anger distracts them from hazards on the road.
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