Street Survival - Advanced Defensive Driving



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We are all human and subject to various emotions because of what life throws at us. Maybe we have just lost our job, a family member has died, our house has burned down. There are a million things that could have a negative impact on us and this WILL have an effect on our behavior on the streets.

Having insight will help us to keep our emotions in check for either how we treat others, or being more tolerant of their actions.

Throughout the course I will refer to either 'responding' or 'reacting' to a situation. There is a vast difference between the two.

Responding means taking measures to mitigate, or calm a situation down. Conversely, reacting to a situation will escalate it to become more intense, sadly often with tragic consequences.

On the streets, no matter where we live, we will come across those who will test our patience. The next two videos look at aggressive persons and then a level up from that, road rage.

Here we look at each of the increasingly escalatory threatening levels:

🛈 Info:

Thinking Attitude

🛈 Types of driver attitudes

There are several different driver attitudes on the road, and some can be more dangerous than others. Here are a few examples:

  • Aggressive drivers: These drivers are often impatient, angry, and prone to road rage. They may tailgate, honk excessively, weave in and out of traffic, or engage in other risky behaviors that can put themselves and others at risk.

  • Distracted drivers: These drivers are often focused on something other than driving, such as texting, eating, or talking on the phone. They may not be paying attention to the road, which can increase the risk of accidents.

  • Careless drivers: These drivers may be inattentive, inexperienced, or simply not taking driving seriously. They may speed, run red lights or stop signs, or make sudden lane changes without signaling.

  • Defensive drivers: These drivers are focused on safety and avoiding accidents. They may drive cautiously, follow traffic laws, and be aware of their surroundings at all times.

  • Courteous drivers: These drivers are respectful of other drivers on the road and may let other drivers merge or pass, use their signals properly, and obey traffic laws.

  • Reckless drivers: These drivers take risks and engage in dangerous behaviors that can put themselves and others at risk. They may speed excessively, drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or engage in other dangerous behaviors.

It's important to remember that everyone on the road has a responsibility to drive safely and avoid putting themselves and others in danger.

Defensive and courteous driving are the best attitudes to adopt for safe and responsible driving.

🛈 Types of driver personalities

When discussing driver personality types, it's important to note that individuals can exhibit a range of characteristics and behaviors on the road. While there is no universally accepted categorization of driver personality types, here are some common descriptions that are often used:

  • Cautious/Defensive: These drivers prioritize safety and adhere strictly to traffic rules. They tend to drive at or below the speed limit, maintain safe following distances, and anticipate potential hazards. Cautious drivers are often focused on minimizing risks and avoiding accidents.

  • Aggressive: Aggressive drivers display a competitive and assertive driving style. They may frequently change lanes, tailgate, exceed speed limits, and engage in other aggressive behaviors. Aggressive drivers are often impatient and may exhibit road rage tendencies.

  • Impatient: Impatient drivers have a low tolerance for delays and may take risks or engage in aggressive maneuvers to reach their destinations quickly. They may display frustration, honk their horns excessively, or exhibit impulsive behaviors on the road.

  • Nervous/Anxious: Nervous or anxious drivers experience high levels of stress or anxiety while driving. They may be overly cautious, exhibit indecisiveness, or struggle with making quick decisions. Nervous drivers may avoid certain driving situations or unfamiliar areas due to their anxiety.

  • Careless/Distracted: Careless or distracted drivers are easily distracted while driving, often engaging in activities that divert their attention away from the road. They may use mobile phones, eat, apply makeup, or engage in other distractions. Careless drivers are at higher risk of accidents due to their inattention.

  • Confident: Confident drivers have a strong belief in their driving abilities and may exhibit assertiveness on the road. They make decisions decisively, maintain a steady pace, and navigate through traffic with ease. However, overconfidence can sometimes lead to risky behaviors.

  • Rule-Breakers: Rule-breaking drivers have a tendency to disregard traffic laws and regulations. They may exceed speed limits, run red lights, or engage in other illegal behaviors. Rule-breakers may prioritize their own convenience over safety and are at higher risk of accidents.

It's important to remember that these personality types are generalizations and not everyone fits neatly into a single category. Drivers can exhibit different characteristics and behaviors depending on various factors, such as the situation, mood, and external factors.

Safe driving involves being self-aware, practicing defensive driving, following traffic laws, and being considerate of others on the road. It's crucial to prioritize safety and strive for responsible and respectful behavior behind the wheel.

🛈 Driver attitude and behavior

Driver attitude and behavior are critical components influencing road safety and the overall driving environment. Understanding the relationship between the two helps in developing strategies for reducing road accidents, enhancing driver education, and promoting positive driving cultures. Here's an overview of how driver attitude and behavior are interconnected and why they matter:

Understanding Driver Attitude

  • Definition: Driver attitude refers to a driver's set of beliefs, feelings, and values regarding driving practices. This includes perceptions of speed, adherence to traffic laws, consideration for other road users, and beliefs about what constitutes safe or risky driving.

  • Influences: Several factors influence driver attitudes, including cultural norms, personal experiences, education, and even the perceived behavior of other drivers. Media and societal attitudes towards driving can also play a significant role.

  • Impact on Behavior: A driver's attitude significantly impacts their driving behavior. For example, a driver who believes speeding is acceptable is more likely to engage in speeding behavior.

Understanding Driver Behavior

  • Definition: Driver behavior encompasses the actions taken by drivers while operating a vehicle. This includes observable actions such as speed choice, use of turn signals, adherence to traffic signs, and aggressive driving maneuvers.

  • Influences: While driver behavior is directly influenced by attitude, it is also shaped by external factors such as road conditions, traffic laws, enforcement practices, and the behavior of other road users.

  • Feedback Loop: Behavior can reinforce or modify attitudes over time. Positive experiences with safe driving can reinforce safe attitudes, while negative experiences or perceived benefits from risky behavior can lead to more dangerous attitudes.

The Relationship Between Attitude and Behavior

  • Direct Relationship: There's a direct relationship where positive attitudes towards safe driving often lead to safer driving behaviors, and negative attitudes towards these aspects can lead to riskier behaviors.

  • Modifying Factors: The relationship between attitude and behavior can be modified by external factors such as peer pressure, driving conditions, and law enforcement activities.

  • Intervention Points: Understanding this relationship provides valuable intervention points for road safety initiatives, including driver education programs aimed at modifying attitudes, law enforcement to influence perceived consequences of behaviors, and public campaigns to shift societal norms around driving.

Importance in Road Safety

  • Enhancing road safety involves addressing both driver attitudes and behaviors. Programs that focus on changing attitudes towards more positive views of road safety are likely to result in behavior changes that decrease the risk of accidents.

  • Monitoring and research into driver attitudes and behaviors can help identify emerging risks on the roads and inform the development of targeted interventions.


The interplay between driver attitude and behavior is complex, with each influencing the other in a dynamic relationship. Efforts to improve road safety must consider both elements, employing a combination of education, enforcement, and engineering solutions to promote positive changes in driving culture. Recognizing the role of societal attitudes and personal beliefs in shaping driving behavior is crucial for developing effective strategies to reduce road accidents and enhance the overall safety of the driving environment.

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Street Survival - Advanced Defensive Driving