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New data shows road rage incidents in LA hit an all-time high in June

New data shows road rage incidents in LA increased almost 33%
New data shows road rage incidents in LA increased almost 33% 02:09

If it feels like road rage incidents are happening more often, it's because they are. According to the Los Angeles Police Department, there were 90 reported road rage incidents in June, the highest number since the department began gathering monthly data. 

Crosstown at USC analyzed data from the LAPD and discovered that between January and June 2022, there were 459 road rage incidents, compared to 346 during the same timeframe in 2021 — a 32.7% increase.

"More often than not, most road rage is just simply an accident," said safety expert Adam Coughran. 

He added that the accidents often escalate into violent behaviors. 

"He's break-checking me," said road rage victim Nakita. 

She said that the man that led California Highway Patrol on a wild chase and was eventually arrested in a Willowbrook neighborhood last October assaulted her. 

"I'm going to punch you," Nakita recalled the suspect saying. "I'm going to sock you. I'm going to hurt you."

The LAPD defines road rage as assault with a deadly weapon while driving. In many instances, the weapon used is a car but in other situations, it could be a firearm. According to the report, there were 136 road rage incidents involving a firearm, up from 101 in the same timeframe last year. 

"This is the one shot that hit the far," said Ryutaro Kasuga. "He fired three times in total."

In April, Kasuga was driving along the 110 Freeway in Carson when a man driving a silver Toyota Camry began shooting. 

Experts recommend victims remain in the car, lock the doors, call 911 and get away. 

"Police dispatchers will direct them toward a police department or toward where one of their responding units is coming from," said Coughran. "But also to talk them down to an area of safety."

Coughran reminded those with a short temper to always take a breath.

"Yell and scream in your car to yourself," he added. "Try to defuse and de-escalate yourself, so it doesn't end up not only as a road rage incident, where now law enforcement's involved, and now your morning commute ends up as your commute to jail."

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