In December of 2016, the Straits Times reported a recent increase in the number of road rage incidents in Singapore. In some cases, the angry people involved have stopped on the highway, gotten out of their cars, and hurled insults, in spite of the traffic around them. In other situations, drivers have actually struck each other, seemingly oblivious to the fact that others were watching or even recording the scene. These incident have brought road rage back into the limelight in Singapore.

A Contributing Factor

The increase in the use of in-car cameras may be giving these road rage incident a higher profile than usual. Drivers who own the cameras think that the video footage will back up their side of the story, so they may feel emboldened to confront someone whom they believe was in the wrong. The videos are sometimes uploaded to the internet, where hundreds of thousands of people can replay them and comment on them. This kind of visibility can add fuel to the fire and turn a single altercation into a full-blown online war.

Ideally, these videos from mobile phones and in-car cameras should be given to the police, rather than being posted on social media websites. The footage can be helpful to a judge when settling a dispute, but it is not the only evidence required in a case. The court also reviews documentation, photos, and personal testimonies from the parties involved and from witnesses.

A Deeper Reason

One psychiatrist in Singapore, Dr. Adrian Wang, suspects that the spike in road rage incidents has less to do with the new in-car cameras and more to do with the overall stress levels among Singapore’s citizens. “People who are vulnerable to road rage may have a lot of tension, stress, and resentment, harboured over time,” he says. “And when you have had a bad day at work, or had a row with the wife, the anger takes over. On another day, you may have just given way to another motorist and let it pass.”

The stress associated with school performance, career goals, family responsibilities, and personal relationships can accumulate over time, and the perceived wrongdoing of another driver is just too much, on top of everything else. It’s the lighted match applied to an explosive combination of anxiety, depression, and stress. Add to that the human desire to retaliate when wronged, and you have a recipe for road rage.

Danger and Consequences

Road rage can be dangerous and frightening, not only for the people directly involved but for everyone around them. Stopping cars and getting out to argue interrupts the flow of traffic, distracts other drivers, and causes a bigger problem. That’s why Singapore courts are cracking down on road rage incidents, with stricter penalties and harsher sentencing.

Solutions for Fighting Anger on the Road

If you feel rage boiling up inside you frequently when you’re on the road, take some time out of your busy schedule to relax, to breathe, and to visit the experts at Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic. We have some of the top psychologists in Singapore as our staff, and they will be happy to help you identify the sources of stress, the triggers for your anger, and some ways that you can deal with those triggers. In time, you may find that your experiences on the road become much calmer and more pleasant.

News Feed from Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic

Source: Straits Times, 18 Dec, 2016