How HPD’s ‘Safe Roadways’ Initiative is combatting road rage shootings in the Houston area

Photo by Maxwell Ridgeway on Unsplash (Unsplash)

HOUSTONRoad rage shootings are unfortunately not uncommon in the Houston area and law enforcement officials are looking for ways to ensure drivers are safe as they travel across the city.

The Houston Police Department’s “Safe Roadways” Initiative aims to eliminate aggressive driving, speeding and road rage on our streets. HPD collaborates with several Houston-area law enforcement agencies on this initiative, including the Houston Metro Police Department, Harris County Sheriff’s Office, the Texas Department of Public Safety, and Harris County Precincts 1-8.

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Plan of Action

Through this initiative, HPD is focusing on education and messaging in addition to enforcement. Their plan of action includes:

  • Officers working in a combination of marked and unmarked units while patrolling major freeways in the city during peak traffic times
  • Regional partners acting as a force multiplier communicating directly with HPD units working on this initiative
  • Officers will be proactively looking for aggressive driving behavior: - Excessive speeding - Following too closely - Multiple lane changes without signaling - Obscene gestures and other acts of aggression directed at motorists - Unreasonable use of vehicles’ horns

A priority objective is to take illegal guns off the streets, which will decrease the likelihood of road rage shootings.

Here are some habits drivers are encouraged to have as they travel:

  • Reduce your stress: Pre-plan your trip and allow plenty of time to get to your destination.
  • Be patient and courteous to other drivers: Remember they have families too.
  • Do not take other drivers’ actions personally; take the high road.
  • Keep your cool in traffic.
  • Avoid aggressive driving.

Law enforcement has provided these tips for avoiding actions that provoke other motorists:

  • Avoid tailgating
  • Let drivers pass
  • Use turn signal
  • Let drivers merge
  • Consider others in parking lots

Here are some tips for avoiding confrontations while driving:

  • Avoid eye contact
  • Do not respond to aggression with aggression
  • Be tolerant and forgiving
  • Avoid offensive hand gestures
  • Call 911 if threatened

Authorities also urge drivers to remember the ABC’s of safe driving:

  • Avoid distractions
  • Be well rested
  • Continually monitor traffic

About the Author

Prairie View A&M University graduate with a master’s degree in Digital Media Studies from Sam Houston State. Delta woman. Proud aunt. Lover of the color purple. 💜

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