First Road Rage Encounter..

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TwoSides11's Comment
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Just want to share something that happened and get some advice on what I could have done differently maybe...

Today I encountered my first road rage driver from what I would say was an angry Prime van driver having a bad day. The situation was I merged back onto 81s from leaving a rest area. Before merging on I saw that I had enough space and time to do so without causing an incident. The Prime driver was in the right lane and the left lane was clear for them to move over if needed. I merge on doing about 40-45mph but came to an uphill climb about a quarter mile ahead and wasnt able to pick up more speed and actually lost speed going up, I'm at 70k gross right now.

I check my mirrors and see the Prime driver is coming up on me fast. When she caught up to me she was awfully close to rear ending me before swerving violently into the left lane. While going up the hill she starts to pass me then out of nowhere does a sharp turn in front of me. I had to slam on my brakes and swerve partially into the shoulder so her trailer wouldn't hit me in the driver door. It was a very close call. Of course I'm like WTF was that! I regroup and continue to drive.

While climbing the hill another tuck passes me and gets between me and the Prime driver. Now on a straight away I notice we are doing 40mph. I get into the left lane to pass the truck in front of me and see that the Prime driver is the one purposely driving slow. Aww man smh, I'm hesitant to try and pass because I dont know what that driver is going to do but now I'm stuck in the left lane with cars behind me. I accelerate to 60mph and start to pass the Prime driver but as I approached she begins to swerve into my lane. I time it so that when she swerves back in her lane I accelerate more and go past. When I'm coming up along side her she inches over and has her tires in my lane. I lay on the air horn. I look over at her and shrug my shoulders, she gives me the finger smh. I pass her and get back into the right lane in front of her. The other truck passes her and gets behind me.

Thinking it's over I forget about what happened and focus on the road. Maybe 2 miles down comes another hill. The truck behind me passes to the left and there is that Prime driver again. She passes me and cuts me off again. This time I anticipated it and didn't have to slam on my brakes. She then brakes going uphill with no reason for doing so. I don't want to play this game so when she hits the brakes I move into the left lane and pass her.

I can't stay in the left lane going 50mph uphill so I have to get back in front of her. Another truck passes us and I see she moved into the left lane, so I move over with her blocking her from passing me. Now we are both stuck in the left lane because cars are now passing us on the right. A flatbed comes up on the right and I guess he saw what was happening and helped me out. He pulls up next to me and motions me to get in the right lane. He gets in front of me, I get into the right lane and he slowed down enough so the Prime driver couldn't pass me. The flatbedder is riding along side me and I wave and say thank you. Back on a straight away I pick up speed and gain distance on the Prime driver.

I'm perplexed on why that situation occurred. I didn't cut her off and she had a clear lane to pass on the left if she thought I was driving too slow. I wasn't going to post this but I figured maybe someone has something to share on what I could have done differently or handled it better?? Not sure how it would have played out if the flatbed guy didn't intervene...

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
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what I could have done differently or handled it better?

I'd just have hung back as far as you can from them, getting along side and passing each other back and forth escalates the situation.

Also try to get a trailer and or tractor number and send a email to the company with the mile marker and what happened. I'd only do that if it was extremely close which it sounds like it was.

Mike R.'s Comment
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In a case where you're closely matched in governed speed and power I drop an mph down and just let the other truck get ahead. Sometimes a quick "Take it driver" on the CB is enough to assuage their ego so they'll move on. Big thing is don't let it get to you and dont go on the offensive. (Easier said than done I know!)

Davy A.'s Comment
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She may have been having a bad day, who knows. I had a guy pull that same kind of stuff, in a similar situation, I just hung way back and after a while asked him if he was ok on the CB, nicely LIke I was concerned for him. He sped off shortly there after. I also had a time where I lit into a guy for having his brights on and just killing us in the mirrors. He finally answered back that it wasnt his truck, they were aimed to high and were leds. He said he felt bad and was getting a lot of heat for it. He seemed pretty genuine. I appologized for being hotheaded, I felt genuinely bad for it.

Steve L.'s Comment
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Prime trucks are usually the least of my worries. I'm governed at 67 and usually I'm passing them. Occasionally, I'll encounter a Prime that (I'm guessing) is a Lease/Purchase Driver and they pass me.

I experienced similar circumstances in steep hills of the PA/OH, when driving for Schneider. I agree with Bobcat Bob, hang back a little. If you're not governed, I'd hang back, let them move on and I'd pass them once they get back to cruising speed.

As difficult as this is, hanging back for a few minutes while their blood simmers down, probably won't affect your on-time delivery. But it just may save your life.

Rob T.'s Comment
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The Prime driver was definitely in the wrong for how they behaved. When you merged did you have your hazards on? We have a heavy load we pickup that has us merge onto the interstate doing around 40 mph and immediately climb a mile long hill that you're lucky to hit 50. Meanwhile traffic on the interstate has a speed limit of 70. I'll merge into the right lane then ride my hazards all the way to the top. Never had any issues with other drivers as they're aware I'm moving slow and they have plenty of time to get over.

Based on how you described this I'm guessing the other driver wasn't paying attention and that's somehow your fault. Most people refuse to accept responsibility that they did something wrong and would rather wrongly place the blame on someone else than make themselves look bad. The best way to handle any dangerous situation is to distance yourself from it. Whether it's a vehicle not maintaining their lane or road rage its best to let them be. There have been a few times that somebody decides to play games by slowing down and speeding up to prevent me from getting over or by playing leap frog. Depending on the circumstances I'll pull off and use the restroom/grab a snack or I'll pull off on a ramp just to get right back on. In the grand scheme you're not losing much time but more importantly you're distancing yourself from a problematic driver. Your stress level will be much lower as well making for a more enjoyable day.

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Bird-One's Comment
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I always remind myself when someone does something stupid that I want to engage with. Slow it down, be pro. Let them go. Not worth it. Like Rob T said pull over if you can for five minutes. Take a breath reset your mind and take back off. It can be hard for me sometimes when my truck has a 550 cat with no governor but it’s just not with it.

Banks's Comment
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I had an issue with a prime driver not too long ago. I'm driving along 80 West in NJ in the middle lane. There are signs for a construction zone coming up so I put on my right signal. This guy is riding next to my kite the entire time. I slow down, he slows down. I speed up, he speeds up. I end up having to come to a complete stop as I approach the construction and when he passes, he hits the horn.

BK's Comment
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I think law enforcement personnel are trained to do 2 things in confrontational situations: De-escalate and de-fuse. I greatly respect drivers who do that in these situations.

Banks's Comment
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I think law enforcement personnel are trained to do 2 things in confrontational situations: De-escalate and de-fuse. I greatly respect drivers who do that in these situations.

I put it in context. Everything I've been through in my life and everything I've done to get to where I am, this is small. Very small. Some guy I don't know and don't care about felt like inconveniencing me. Not a big deal. I made it home, had dinner with my family and slept in my bed with my wife. Life is pretty good and there aren't many people that have the power to change that.

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