Even the calmest drivers have experienced an occasional moment of road rage at the hands of a rude or inconsiderate motorist.
But what’s most likely to set drivers off?
According to a new study by travel site Expedia, some of the most rage-inducing behaviors are slowpokes who won’t move out of the left lane, tailgaters and people who text while driving.
The report was released in conjunction with Memorial Day weekend, the traditional start of summer and the busiest highway travel season of the year.
“As the unofficial start of summer, Memorial Day sees a huge spike in the number of drivers on the road,” said Expedia General Manager John Morrey. “The rule, as with airplanes and hotels, is that shared spaces demand decorum and attentiveness.”
Despite the fact that almost every state has a law against texting while driving, the risky act is still unpleasantly common. It was rated by 69 percent of the drivers surveyed as the activity most likely to get their blood boiling.
A close second on the list? The tailgater, who seems to think that by riding 3 feet off the bumper of the car ahead of them, they’ll somehow get to their destination quicker. About 60 percent of the respondents listed that as a top road-rage trigger.
Multitaskers; drifters, who can’t settle into one lane; and crawlers, who bump along at well below the speed limit, rounded out the top five.
Other road-rage inducing behaviors included the swerver, who will suddenly change lanes or turn without signaling, and left-lane hogs.
Curiously, the report found that 69 percent of those surveyed have been “flipped off” by another motorist for some perceived slight—but only 17 percent of those who responded to the study said they have ever extended the rude hand gesture.
The 2014 Road Rage Report, which surveyed 1,001 American adults with a valid driver’s license, has an error rate of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points. It follows another recent survey by AutoVantage, which found that Houston has the rudest drivers in the U.S.
According to Expedia, however, New York City ranks highest in terms of the rudest drivers, followed by Los Angeles and Atlanta.