Strategies for reducing risks of tailgating

Tailgating is the practice of driving on a road too closely behind another vehicle, the following are some of the strategies for reducing reducing risks of tailgating.

  • The safest solution is to yield to the other driver. Slower traffic should move to the outside lane (if one exists), or as far to the outside as is safe to do so.
  • If you cannot yield then leave more room in front of your vehicle to allow for safe (i.e. longer) stopping distances for you and the tailgater behind you.
  • Try to encourage a tailgating driver to overtake if it is safe to do so.
  • Let the tailgating driver pass in some other way, for example, by pulling into a lay by, or going twice round a large roundabout.
  • Slow slightly below the normal flow of traffic speed. This allows the tailgater more room to pass, and your slower speed makes it easier for him to do so. It also allows more room in front of your vehicle to stop safely if required.
  • Unsafe practices such as braking to force the tailgater to retreat or slowing down to “punish” the tailgater are sometimes practiced by aggrieved motorists and may lead to an escalation of road rage.
  • Tapping the brake pedal (without braking) to illuminate the brake lights or displaying hazard lights to bring the tailgater’s attention to the fact that his or her driving is causing concern may also aggravate the situation.

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