Aggressive driving: The contribution of the drivers and the situation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

266 Scopus citations


Aggressive driving is defined in terms of the frustration-aggression model. In that context aggressive driving is a syndrome of frustration-driven behaviors, enabled by the driver's environment. These behaviors can either take the form of instrumental aggression - that allows the frustrated driver to move ahead at the cost of infringing on other road users' rights (e.g., by weaving and running red lights) - or hostile aggression which is directed at the object of frustration (e.g., cursing other drivers). While these behaviors may be reflective of individual differences in aggression, it is argued that the exclusive focus on the characteristics of the aggressive drivers and how to control them is short-sighted. Instead, this paper proposes a multi-factor approach to the problem. Five studies conducted so far tend to support this approach, by showing that specific aggressive behaviors - such as honking and running red lights - are associated with cultural norms, actual and perceived delays in travel, and congestion. Ergonomics-oriented approaches that involve environmental modifications are proposed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-160
Number of pages24
JournalTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1998


  • Agression
  • Horn honking
  • Red light running
  • Road rage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Transportation
  • Applied Psychology


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