Unless this is your first time on the road, you have likely seen tailgaters at some point. These drivers get dangerously close to your vehicle and put you at risk of being involved in an accident. If you are not careful when a tailgater is near, you could end up with injuries, a totaled car, or worse.

The good news is that you can take steps to overcome that problem and stay out of harm’s way. Follow the tips in this guide to protect yourself from tailgaters the next time you’re on the road.

Remain Calm

When you’re being tailgated, your first step is to keep calm as much as you can. Getting upset or mad when a tailgater is behind you is the natural reaction, but you don’t want to fall into that trap.

Getting emotional is easy when people drive too closely. The problem is that you are more likely to make mistakes if you let yourself get emotional, so take some time to calm yourself down before you react. You will be in a much better position to make the right call. Take a few deep breaths to release your tension, and you will feel better in no time.

Get Out of the Way

After you take some time to calm down, look for a safe way to get out of the tailgater’s way so that you can avoid the problem before it gets any worse. If you are on a highway, try moving to the right lane to let the tailgater pass. Otherwise, look for gas stations and other businesses and pull into their parking lot.

On back roads, you can pull into driveways or the side of the road to get out of the tailgater’s path and minimize the odds of an accident.

Don’t Overuse Your Brakes

automobile crash accident on street, damaged cars after collision in city

Some people react to tailgaters by slamming on their brakes, hoping to get the tailgater to back off so they’ll keep a safe distance. The problem is that hitting your brakes could make the situation much worse than it has to be, and that is a trap you don’t want to encounter.

If the tailgater does not back off quickly enough after you hit your brakes, they will hit your vehicle and cause a dangerous collision. Remember to consider all possible outcomes before hitting your brakes too soon. Doing so is one of the best ways to avoid a potential tragedy.

Stay Alert

Prevention is one of the best ways to avoid trouble when tailgaters are near. You can avoid the problem before it starts by knowing where possible tailgaters are before they get too close to your vehicle. Also, stay away from distracted drivers when you can.

When tailgaters get behind you, look for roads or exits you can use to get out of the situation before it gets any worse than it already is. Pay attention to other tailgaters in the area so that you can keep your distance. When you stay alert, you keep tailgaters away before they have the chance to ruin your day.

Final Thoughts

Almost everyone finds themselves being tailgated from time to time, and it’s important you do what you can to stay out of those situations. Tailgaters sometimes lose focus and get too close, but some people tailgate because they want you to move out of their way.

Tailgating has consequences beyond accidents as well. According to one Dallas car accident lawyer, tailgating is a moving violation that can result in court costs, mandatory fees, and fines, and it can also cause you to end up in court as the defendant in a personal injury or wrongful death case.

No matter the situation, it’s vital you handle each tailgater in a way that reduces the danger and keeps you safe. You must do your best to remain calm and keep a reasonable distance from the tailgater.

If you see a safe way to move over or get out of the way, it’s the smart way to reduce the threat and avoid dangerous situations while you are on the road. When you keep yourself and your passengers out of harm’s way, you will know you did the right thing.

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