Confrontations on the road have particular aspects that are not present in other self-defense situations.

    First of all, there are a lot of them. You might literally face this situation a couple of times a day during your commute. According to the Automobile Association of America, Road Rage incidents in the U.S. have increased 51% in the last 6 years. The same report says that for every reported incident, hundreds -- perhaps thousands -- of encounters go unreported.

    Secondly, the speeds of vehicles are the most dangerous. In no other situation will you be subjected to the tremendous forces exerted by automobiles. Even firearms can’t deliver the massive damage that speeding cars produce.

    So, when you give in to your fight or flight response and gun the car to run away, you are dramatically increasing your risk. The chance of injury from a motor vehicle accident rises exponentially when it travels over 40 miles per hour.

    However, with thousands of pounds of metal, safety glass and plastic surrounding you, your car is a cocoon-like capsule that can transport you to safety. As long as you keep the doors locked and keep moving it is extremely difficult for someone to hurt you.

What can you do if you are in caught in a Road Rage situation?

  • First and foremost, slow down! You have better control of your car, risk of injury is less, and the attacker’s car has less force to use against you. Cops will tell you that slow speed pursuits are actually more difficult than high-speed chases. In the high-speed pursuits, the criminal usually crashes!

  • Call the police on your cellular phone. Make sure the bad guys see you calling!

  • Do not stop or get out of your car. Even if you are bumped or they try to pin your car against the curb or median, keep going! Back up and drive around them, drive up onto the curb, whatever you have to do, but keep going.

  • Stay in the flow of traffic. There is safety in numbers. You have a chance that others will be observing, calling the police or even, in some cases, helping you.

  • If you are armed, do not show your weapon nor shoot from -- or at -- a moving vehicle. There is a web of legal problems here. Do not be tempted to fire a warning shot or show them your gun to "scare" them off. You face multiple, multiple legal and logistical problems when you try to shoot and drive at the same time. However, if the men are forcing their way into your car, do not hesitate to employ the amount of force needed to stop the attack.

Finally, with all that said, the best two things you can do to protect yourself on the road is to buckle your seat belt and stay alert!