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When to call 911 to report a reckless driver

For many folks in Washington, the daily commute to get from one place to another can quickly turn monotonous with each repetitive minute. For some, the urge to get somewhere faster is satisfied by speeding or swerving around other vehicles to avoid traffic. For others, impatience can create danger when drivers engage in reckless behavior or allow themselves to get frustrated with other motorists.

When people are in a situation where they questioned if another driver is creating a dangerous risk with their poor driving practices, it can be difficult for them to assess whether or not it is appropriate to call 911 and report an emergency. According to Consumer Reports, individuals should only contact 911 if they feel that their life is in immediate danger because of the other motorist’s actions. Minor traffic violations, albeit annoying, should not be hastily reported as one call could tie up a 911 operator when his or her assistance could be much more effective on other calls. If 911 is contacted, the caller should pull over and describe his or her location. A description of the perpetrator’s vehicle is also recommended. 

The Huffington Post reports that reckless driving is one of the top 15 causes of car accidents. Driving is considered reckless when people behave aggressively behind the wheel, speed excessively or change lanes carelessly and quickly. In these types of situations, it is best for other motorists to stay calm and pull over to report the offending driver. People can more effectively avoid participating in reckless driving behaviors by allowing themselves enough time to get from one place to another.