Car, Driver, Honking road rage

(The Center Square) – Drivers in Washington state might want to be wary of their fellow drivers. 

That’s because Washington earned the dubious distinction of a No. 9 ranking in a nationwide study by Forbes Advisor that looked at 10 key metrics from a survey of 5,000 drivers to determine which states have the most confrontational drivers.

Those key metrics include relatively benign activities such as honking in frustration and rude gestures, to more aggressive actions such as tailgating and cutting off other drivers, all the way up to purposely colliding with other vehicles and pointing a gun at or shooting at other motorists.

Forbes Advisor spokesperson Mark LoCastro delved into Washington’s top 10 finish.

“With a score of 88.91 out of 100, the Evergreen State ranked ninth on our list of states with the worst road rage,” he reiterated to The Center Square via email.

Other numbers from the study solidified Washington’s ranking.

“Washington tied with West Virginia as the state that was most likely to say that another driver has bumped, rammed into or otherwise damaged their car on purpose (12%),” LoCastro said.

Verbal confrontations between drivers, according to the study, are not uncommon in Washington state.

“Washington drivers were also fourth-most likely to report that another driver has insulted or threatened them (46%),” LoCastro said.

He continued, “Washingtonians also frequently reported being cut off (46%), honked at (63%), tailgated (63%) and being on the receiving end of rude or offensive gestures (44%).”

Aggressive driving and its impact has seemingly become ubiquitous in Washington.

“Nearly 1 in 4 drivers from Washington (23%) know of someone in their state that was injured in a road rage incident,” LoCastro said.

Washington's Pacific Northwest neighbors fared better, with Oregon tied with Arizona for the No. 31 ranking and Idaho tied with Maine and Ohio for the No. 24 position. 

Surprisingly, California and New York – often stereotyped as states with bad drivers – did not crack the top 20 in Forbes Advisor’s ranking of states with the most confrontational drivers.

California was ranked No. 23, while New York came in at No. 46.

The 10 states with the most road rage:

1. Utah

2. Missouri

3. Colorado

4. Oklahoma

5. New Mexico

6. Nevada

7. Maryland

8. Indiana

9. Washington

10. Delaware

The 10 states with the least road rage:

50. North Dakota

49. Pennsylvania

48. Michigan

47. Florida

46. New York

45. Texas

44. Virginia

43. Georgia

42. South Carolina

Staff Reporter

Brett Davis reports on Washington state government for The Center Square. He previously worked for public policy organizations the Freedom Foundation and Washington Farm Bureau, as well as various community newspapers.