JACKSONVILLE, Fla – Road rage shootings are on the rise, according to a new study. An average of 44 people were killed or injured in the U.S. in road rage shootings each month in 2021.
Just last week in Mandarin, a suspected road rage shooting led to a police chase with shots being fired at officers that ended with police performing a PIT maneuver that crashed the suspect’s car into the front yard of a home, causing damage to the property. The suspected shooter is charged with the attempted murder of a police officer.
Police say the incident began when the man shot at another person’s car while that driver was sitting at a traffic light at the intersection of Loretto Road and San Jose Boulevard, waiting for the light to turn green.
The victim said he doesn’t know why he was shot at as there was no interaction between the two beforehand.
Everytown for Gun Safety, a group that advocates for gun control and against gun violence, says there were more than 700 cases of road rage involving guns in 2021.
The group also says, between 2016 and 2019, there were an average of 22 people shot and killed or wounded in road rage shooting incidents each month.
In 2020, that number jumped to 34. It rose even higher in 2021, reaching 44 gun deaths and injuries from road rage incidents in an average month, doubling the pre-pandemic average.
The study also suggests some solutions.
It says during the pandemic there were widespread disruptions in social services with a dramatic increase in stressors on people’s lives.
The group says greater investment in mental health could help.
As a driver, there are some things you can do to help you keep your cool, especially during some of those frustrating times behind the wheel.
- Do not react to angry drivers because that can escalate any tension that’s already there
- Take deep breaths when you get mad and just concentrate on the road
- Don’t let little mistakes that either you or another driver makes get you worked up