Our Northwest

I'm a little rude, but you're ruder

Wednesday, January 16, 2019by  Derek Wing

GettyImages-685858216.jpgThat may be the upshot of our latest PEMCO Poll on aggressive driving. Compared with an identical poll four years ago, drivers said they're about twice as likely now to "assert themselves" behind the wheel. They also believe other drivers give in to rude impulses more often than they do, saying they see about five times more aggressive acts (around 10 per month) than they commit themselves.

And … mirror, mirror on the wall, who says they're the most aggressive of all?

Millennials. Yep, the generation that's also known for "nice" and working together to solve problems. People under age 35 admit to an average of 3.3 rude-behind-the-wheel maneuvers per month compared with 2.0 in 2015. Could it be they're just more transparent about it?

Even if we let our inner grump run free more often, the poll shows highway harmony isn't dead. It saw no change, for example, in the number of times we let in other cars trying to merge or give a friendly wave when someone does the same for us. Drivers say they average slightly more than eight good deeds a month.

Still, if you're looking to keep a road-rage target off your back, avoid the six triggers in this video, hailing from our previous poll. Oh, and ditch the "I ♥ Yorkies" bumper sticker. Turns out, it might be enough to push a frazzled fellow driver over the edge.

Read more in the complete PEMCO Northwest Poll, in which Seattle's FBK Research surveyed 1,200 Washington and Oregon residents. 

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