"Firstly, when you drive, forget about the row you had with your spouse, or the burnt toast etc, and concentrate on your driving. During normal driving, your stress level increases, so anything on top of this can mean that if something was to occur, you'd find yourself turning into a psychopathic road-warrior. Don't tail-gate aggressively, don't flash your headlights angrily, and don't make obscene gestures. If other drivers provoke you, try to stay calm. Avoid eye-contact. Don't challenge your aggressor in any way, by slamming on your brakes or beeping your horn. Never leave the safety of your vehicle, and never go into vehicle combat. Don't carry items in your car that could be used as a dangerous weapon, such as a baseball bat. If you really can't control your own road rage, I would seriously suggest going to see a psychiatrist or counsellor about it.

The thing to remember is, the way YOU drive influences the way other drivers behave, so if you suffer from `mad drivers disease', chances are you'll inspire the same in others. We all make mistakes, but instead of saying sorry, which can often diffuse a potential incident, people prefer to blame the other driver. When you ask someone how good their driving is, you'll always get the same answer, `Oh, I'm a great driver'. I've never met an average driver yet." Fiona McClymont

Graham Yuill is a driving instructor and consultant. His book, `Road Rage: An A-Z of Motor Safety', is available at pounds 4.95 from Otter Publications (01243 539106).

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