Road Rage - What would You really Do!

Submitted: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 17:41
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This was a very real situation and I would appreciate any input from those who could visualize themselves in this situation, bearing in mind the practical
limitations at the time.
Wasn't going to post this but recent Remote Area comms posts made me think it has relevance, as despite this happening in surburan Melbourne I can tell you that you feel very alone at the time, you are under pressure and the outcome depends on how you use what you have at the time.

I had just picked up a work of art, a new HF aerial made with care by retired
Melbourne amateurs and the only multi-tap I know of that has taps for both VKS-737 and amateur radio.

I'm in the car, 30km from home and its just on dusk.

I'm now on a multi-lane road and do a right hand turn, seconds later a horn blasts and lights flash behind me.

I must have cut someone off, but I couldn't see anything.

A few seconds later a dark Falcon sedan moves to my passenger side and someone is shouting and waving their arms violently.
A few more seconds and the car is in front of me putting its brakes on and appears to be trying to get me to pull over.
The car in front slows down but does not stop. I take no action at all.

We are now about 1km from the incident start and travelling up towards a Y junction. The car in front speeds up and I think, he has vent his anger and proceeded on.
But no, the car stops in no man's land at the junction.
Instantly I note that the car is positioned to go either way and could be waiting for me.

I go left, and note the car pulls out and slots in behind me.
I am now wide awake and take a random turn into a little side street and sure enough the car follows.
I don't know the area and its now dark, and the following car has dark tint.
I was not able to see into the car and have no knowledge of the occupant(s) but something is clearly on and the actions at the Y junction give me one clear message - this driver had played these games before.

First reaction -> Was to drive such that you do not get boxed in, so I switch GPS modes to North up with the car position centre screen and to plan view - this gives best overall image of the surrounding street layout in an attempt to avoid dead ends in this unfamilar enviroment.

Second reaction -> drive slow and steady obeying all rules.
My mind wandered to an incident reported to me by a 21 year old who had a car close up on him he believed was acting strangely at midnight - he speed up to try and get away - the Blue lights began flashing and he lost his car.

The driver following me had carried on somewhat, but so far hadn't got into the full rage "run you off the road mode", this could have been consistent with being setup.

15 minutes later - its pitch black now, I have been followed winding thru back streets for several km's and I tried to analyse the situation.
The only reason to keep this up would be to try and follow me home or to set up a confrontation.
If their had been a genuine issue, I felt that the driver had more than ample time to take my number, phone in a complaint and break off.

Recent news items about serious road rage assaults meant there was no way I'd stop without support.

I vaguely new of a police station in the area and over the next 10 minutes slowly worked my way towards it, closely followed all the way.
In the few seconds I had as I approached it, it looked badly lighted and probably wasn't manned so I decided to drive past it.

Despite driving right past the police station, which should have indicated my intentions, the following car was still doggedly on my tail.

I switched to plan "B", which was to use my natural advantage and began heading towards a 4wd track despite it being 35km away - here I would loose the tailer without myself engaging in any questionable or possibly dangerous activity to escape.

We maintain a wide ranging 27mhz and UHF cb radio link and I was now overdue.
A radio call came from home asking where I was.
This contact enabled me to explain the situation and try a switch to plan "C".

I had an acquaintance a few km from the police station and my contact got onto this ex-policeman and radio arrangements were quickly made for me to drive near to his place where I would have known support.
All the while I am still analysing the traffic, driving unfamilar streets, watching the car behind and attempting to avoid being trapped.

I'm more than 30 mins into this now, and this guy must have a serious issue, he must have known I wasn't going to lead him home by now, yet he maintained the threat.

What was his purpose!

Approaching the acquaintances's place there is a long dark street, as I headed down it, still only doing only 40kmh the car behind me closed up and moved into a sort of hunting mode.
It began weaving side to side causing its headlights to move back and forth across me.

I don't intimidate easily, stuck to my plan and pulled up just past a "T" junction
where I was expected. This would cause anyone following behind to park across the "T" and under a street light.

I stopped and a few seconds later so did the car following.

It was confrontation time.

The bushes on the road edge moved and my acquaintance stepped out along with his huge german sheppards.
The dogs new me, I got out of the car and they rushed over and enthusiastically greeted me, in full view of the other car.
We all turned and walked towards the dark falcon.

In this instant the whole dynamics of a potentially ugly situation changed.

I now held the cards, but still had no idea what we were up against.

As we approached the driver appeared to lock the doors and grab a Blackberry type phone - perhaps he was now calling for backup ?

We took no aggressive action and simply verified the car details.
I now had time to call the police, which I did and we walked away.

10 minutes later the police arrived and took our details, but the car had gone and we were told it was a company car so they could not contact the driver and the incident would be followed up to-morrow.

My actions in setting up a stopping point where I did meant that I had both a valid reason for being there, witnesses to support the intimidation, and it would not be a "He said, She said" situation.

A week later, we had not heard back from the police and a visit revealed that the incident hadn't been followed up, it was apparently then followed up and the other driver was given a hard time.

I was informed that the whole stituation amounted to "Assault" and that my story was well supported.

No further action was taken.
Robin Miller

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Reply By: Member - Royce- Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:07

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:07
Great response. Keep calm and get to a safe place.

Well done.
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Follow Up By: Member - Royce- Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:43

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:43
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:25

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:25
I think you summed it up in just a few words Royce - I think I see another post about an off topic forum , I bet we could fill it up quickly.
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Follow Up By: Member - Old Girl (QLD) - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:44

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:44
Off the topic hope not this is very good information I would have not thought of turning on the gps. A 4x4 track was considered !!! The story had me tuned in. I would have been scared out of my wits. I will remember the gps thing.
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Follow Up By: Tonyfish#58 - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:53

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:53
Royce - Maybe there is more of this now, but it been going on for a long time, I can quote instances of this that happened to me as far back as 1978.

Actually one would make a real good read that ended if Fremantle WA

Cheers Tony
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Reply By: Wherehegon - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:17

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:17
Hi Robin, I must say you did well and I have probably learnt a lesson from your situation, well done and you didnt end up getting hert. Not sure I would have gone the distance you did to avoid the situation, my wife always says to me Im a hot head and to leave things like this and forget it. I had a situation only a few backs where I had a yellow evo lancer in front of me on the M5, we were on our way to a wedding with 2 other vehicles in tow, a commodore and a new prado, Cruising along left lane cruise control set at 100 no problems, come up towards a slower vehicle look out side mirror yellow evo approaching quit quickly, ok tap breaks so cruise goes off and wait till he goes past, the 3 of us merge over to the fast lane, evo well in front of me resume cruise off we go. All of a sudden the evo is slowing down, ok must have problems with his car so tap breaks off with the cruise and back off keeping a safe gap the next minute this clown breaks as hard as, so me and other 2 vehicles break fairly hard to keep safe distance, off he goes again I move back over to left lane along with the 2 behind me, evo dives over in front of me and slams the brakes on I hit the breaks causing the ABS to cut in, by now Im fuming at this clown like he wanted me to run up the back of him, I merged back over to the right with him doing the same thing, again he does the same thing, this is where you obviously had more brains then me at this stage, I put on highbeams,driving lights, reset cruise held my hands up infront of me so he could see and more or less was telling him through the windscreen that if he does it again hes going to have a bullbar firmly planted in the rear of the lancer and I would keep pushing him as far as I could, by now I was that (cant use the word) lets say annoyed that it was going to be worth the $600 excess to put this clowns boot into his rear seat, he took off then, just as we went through the tunnel he jumped in the left lane to merge off, as I wasnt sure wether there were cameras in the tunnel or not I waited till we come out the other side and moved over on him till there was about an inch between our doors in the meantime Im down with the passengers window giving him a mouthfull then he just looked up and smiled and took off to the left, I reported it to the cops as soon as I got to the wedding, never heard any more about. Wife was furious with me for swerving at him and not just driving and forgetting about it. If I had cut him off or done something then he would have had the right to be annoyed with me but this guy was either on drugs or just a total tool, anyway the wedding turned out great and got back home safely. Looking back now even while writing this it was stupid what I did and if it happens again I will remember your post. Regards Steve
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:31

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:31
Nasty situation you had there Steve.

Its always tricky with retalitry moves as they have a big potential to aggravate things- in my younger days it would have been full on war - but a fair assesment of those times would probably have showed it to be an expensive and unproductive time prancing around with your mates and secretly covering up the extent of your injuries.
Robin Miller

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Follow Up By: Wherehegon - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:55

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:55
Must admit had it been 20 years ago I probably would have stopped there and then and started swinging at him, we didnt have our 2 year old with us at this time, had she been in the car I probably would have stopped on the side of the road and let him go on his way and would have also had the other 2 vehicles stop with me and he proabaly would have thought oh oh theres another two vehicles with 3 other blokes, looking back now I probably should have done that, as above reading your post has made me rethink what I should have done and if was to happen again, this has only ever happened to me once in 20 odd years of driving. I have been guilty of chopping some one up (earlier days of driving) and straight away I have wound down the window and waved as if to say "sorry mate" or have actually had them pull up beside me and have mouthed the word to them "sorry about that". I use to see it all the time especially when driving the trucks you just shake your head as generally they take off giving you the finger. Problem is these days you dont know if you will end up with a bullet in you or a knife in your stomach or worse. Regards Steve
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Reply By: Dasher Des - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:19

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:19
G'day Robin, I think that you handled the situation very rationally and despite your feelings at the time very calmly.
If it had happened to me, I may have made a phone call to the police and asked for a destination where I could have met a patrol car. I'm sure that we all have a voice activated bluetooth phone so that we could have made that phone call legally. Wink Wink Nudge nudge. Although paying a fine for being on the phone whilst driving would probably be worth it. Even if the police did fine you, I'm sure a magistrate might have waved the penalty because of the intimidating circumstances.
Definitely glad that everything worked out well in the end.
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Follow Up By: SDG - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:38

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 18:38
This I also agree would have been my response. If I'm in the car. I've had a similar case on the bike, and while illegal, It is possible to accelerate faster than car, long enough to get away from threat. Then i called in to the nearest cop shop, with memorised rego number. Again, no follow up action.
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:17

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:17
Hi Guys

Central to my position was that I did not know that I wasn't being setup to fail , so using a phone was out anyway - but beyond that I needed every bit of concentration I had to aviod being trapped and possibly then assualted , the phone or even attempting to find your way to an unfamilar without giving an advantage to the other party may have tipped the balance , that was how I saw the possible moves. In these situations 2 way radio is much easier to handle and more immediate.
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Reply By: ChipPunk - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:02

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:02
Cameras do wonders - unless they decide to destroy any evidence - but that's where a good antenna (array) or obvious 3G etc connectability helps....

It is assault by simple definition. You can press charges.

As to mitigating circumstances and not being penalised - don't some states have a zero tolerance policy?

There are evasive and neutralising techniques, but not for here.
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:45

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:45
I probably shouldn't admit this but despite the seriousness of the event and the pressure I sort of warmed to the challenge of coming up with a way of getting out of the situation.

I agree ChipPunk - the neutralising techniques are not for here.
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Reply By: D200Dug- Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:04

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:04
I think I would break the "No mobile phone in a car" rule and be ringing 000 for police backup as soon as I got nervous.

It is a shame how dangerous things have become on our roads.
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:21

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:21
Hi Dug

I would have had I thought it would help , but I saw things as that close that any lack of concentration or diversion from the task at hand , except listen to advice on my 2 way radio could have had serious consequences.
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Follow Up By: D200Dug- Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:26

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:26
you have to do the best thing you can in this situation.

I am just glad you got out unharmed.

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Reply By: MrBitchi (QLD) - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:05

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:05
Had a similar incident a few years back, on a main road on the Gold Coast. After the purp got overly aggressive, sudden braking in front of me etc, I decided to stop in a lighted area and the only place immediately available was a service station. I pulled in and the other party followed. Ended up he assaulted me then bugged out. Service station attendant saw nothing, despite this happening right outside his console window...

I then went to the nearest cop shop and reported the incident. They followed it up the next day. Turned out to be a company ute and the company was only too happy to dob in the driver. Cops had a good talk to him and then he was sacked on the spot. No further action was taken but I think justice was served.

It sure put the wind up me at the time though, and it would be very easy to panic in that kind of situation.
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:24

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:24
Interesting MrBitchi, and there have been similar stories , this guy was abnormally dedicated to his pursuit and I felt that the situation could have ended as you described hence I opted for a solution in which I had a better chance of controlling the outcome.
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Reply By: Andrea11 - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:52

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 19:52
Well done Robin,

To be honest I don't know how I would have reacted except to say it would scare me no end.

What on earth has happened are people becoming more and more Violent? What on earth ever happened to just plain old decency and just the good ole Aussie. It's disgusting the way some of society are today......
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:29

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:29
Hi Andrea

Its good to consider these things in advance and make absolutely sure you can quickly and positively lock your doors at least , while I don't believe I was in error I was excepting of a bit of abuse for the sake of peace but the level some go to these days is quite disturbing - you wonder what he would have dome if the cars had touched - as it was their wasn't even any squealing of brakes.
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Follow Up By: Tonyfish#58 - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:48

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:48
Andrea - I had Things like this happen to me in 1978 in Perth...So it takes a certain person and mental state to bring it on. Its not a new thing and not all people are happy drivers :-)

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Reply By: Wal Footrot - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:00

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:00
The Gold Coast is a probably one of the worst areas for road rage in Australia and I've had a number of experiences. In the two cases where the driver cut in front of me and slammed on the brakes I've just rubbed my hands with glee. All I do is move quietly onto his back bumper make gentle contact then put down the throttle. This gives me a psychological advantage and the road rager has to decide what to do next. It's usually some DH in a crappy ute and is no match for the diesel power of my 4WD and with the situations reversed he panics.

The first guy planted boot and I never saw him again. The second guy tried using his brakes but I already had momentum and his car was eventually pushed into the ditch at the side of the road and would have needed a tow truck to get it out. I got out of my car, laughed at him for about 5 seconds then drove on.

The point I'm making is if they drive in front of you then try to block you in, they are relying on you stopping. Never stop and once they are in front of you, you have the upper hand. Use it! While they are still following you then the advantage is theirs.
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:24

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 20:24
Hi Wal

You pose some interesting points to consider.

I hadn't thought of the aspect that if it really came to a car fight then a 4wd Patrol with low range would win - and I had already powered up my locker compressor just in case - but I guess I was hoping to avoid an incident and I guess that I agree with you that in a fight the trailing heavy car has the advantage.

In my case though this guy seemed resolute about following me , hence I had an advantage in that he would follow wherever I lead which meant I controlled the situation so long as I could setup the stop point to my advantage.

It turned out that the guy following me was about 40 , pretty tough build and apparently clear in his purpose, it was probably a possible dog confrontation that turned the tide.
Robin Miller

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Reply By: Tonyfish#58 - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 21:02

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 21:02
Interesting read - Problem is for a lot of comments Two wrongs do not make it right :-)

If you make a mistake, as we have all done, I find the best thing to do now is Mimic and gesture a big sorry - Most of the time this works, sometimes you get these idiots that will not let it go. Thing is if you start doing bad driving to compensate, are we in reality any better?

You did well Robin - In a 1978 incident, I did not do so good :-)

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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:48

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:48
Sounds like we have both come a long way since 1978 Tony.
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Reply By: Member - Barnesy - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 21:32

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 21:32
Maybe he just wanted to ask you about your vehicle?

Nah not really. I would have phoned the cops to arrange for a meeting place to meet a patrol vehicle. I suppose one advantage is being in a big 4wd.
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:36

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:36
Maybe he had a Toyota back home and wanted to trade up Barnesy , but rather I think he wanted to tear me down.
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Reply By: OREJAP - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 21:49

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 21:49
I think you have done very well under the circumstances. What is going on in our society. Sometimes I wonder where human behaviour is heading. Recently my wife & I were exiting a car park at a local supermarket. A gold coloured 380 Mitsubishi with a female driver on the phone cut me off & proceeded to try & reverse into a parking space,still oblivious to our position behind her. As she started to reverse, i sounded the horn twice to let her know our position behind her. The very attractive female driver (only occupant) stopped the car.put her window down & whilst still on the phone screamed at me "What's your problem Motherbleep?" Well. I didn't know what to do but decided on just staying in the car with my wife & let this woman carry on with her phone call & driving. My wife had her window down so I gave the pretty woman a bit of advice/ "You would probably drive better & be able to park your car if you were not on the phone" Well, silly me. The tirade of abuse was unbelievable out of the gutter persons mouth came words so filthy that they would have made the devil himself blush. I wrote down her rego number & reported the incident to the Police. She was later interviewed & admitted the offence of use a phone whilst driving. She was told by the police that they had enough evidence to charge her with indecent language if she wished to contest the ticket.
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:34

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:34
The world must be changing and we are standing still Orejap - like you I have heard things from some females I would hesitate to call women and it strains belief.
Robin Miller

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Follow Up By: Member - Christopher P (NSW) - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 06:42

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 06:42
I work in a pizza shop and i had some a-hole abuse me for charging him correctly and then proceeded to treat me like i am a dumb ignorant teenager, with no brain, he crossed the line when he said " does your mother ahve an Entertainment book" i told him i don't have a mother, she's dead, and the apologoy was so crappy. after phione call all i wanted to do was go round to his place and give him a lesson in manners. Then i thought whats the use, i would hurt my hand on crap.

you did well

Life's too short to deal with dumb idiots (polite) like them. i carry a big bar in the hilux for situations like that.

If that doesn't work, then the four and a half years of martial arts will.

Anyone wanna dance????

only kidding.
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Reply By: Who was that again? (Vic) - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:12

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:12
Robin, good to see you had your wits about you with a twit like that. Just been trying to think if I know any toughs about in Melbourne, but which way I would go, I don't know. You know, the sort that can break the wrist or jaw of an armed robber.

Some years ago, I can remember I had signalled to move across to the left lane on the Tulla Freeway to head off to the airports. Driving the old Rangie, so it was 1990s when you had to avoid heading onto the Calder. Someone with a Holden towing a trailer with concrete mixer in and form work boards decided he needed to teach me something. He was looking back to see he could scrape the side of the trailer along the side of the Rangie as I headed off toward the airports.

Somehow he thought I was cutting him off so he would do that to me. Just that he didn't think the left two lanes needed to be there to turn left. Great reasoning I thought.

Sometimes there is good reason to drive around with a Tregg hitch on the rear, make a real mess of a radiator.

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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:39

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 22:39
You may be right about the Tregg Hitch John - but I don't even have a Bullbar - maybe I better think that one thru again.
Robin Miller

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Follow Up By: 3GoBush - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 00:03

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 00:03
Good brakes and a Treg hitch equals a smashed radiator, been there done that twice. HA HA HA
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Reply By: Flynnie - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 23:30

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 23:30

I think you did exceptionally well under the circumstances. No doubt you will be reflecting over all your actions and what options you may have had and which you chose to act on and which ones you did not.

I think sometimes these things can be over analysed in hindsight. It is more than sufficient that you got through the situation without injury and without leading the person to your residence. We are human and when under extreme pressure will make some decisions that may be very good, as yours were, and some that are good enough but not optimal and maybe some that look pretty crook after the event. Hence it is good to have a rough idea of how one might respond to a hypothetical situation so that we might carry out the options when it becomes real and not hypothetical rather than try and think of what they are first.

Almost all the advantages were with the rager.
He knew what he wanted - you could only guess.
He may have been armed or mentally disturbed or drug affected - no way you could establish if any of those applied.
He might not even be a rager - motives could include theft or worse. Who would ever know?

I agree with the never stop and talk to them approach. Keep driving and ultimately be prepared to make use of the vehicle that you are in. A large 4x4 has a collision advantage, usually a range advantage and a rough road advantage. Others have pointed out if they are ahead of you rather than behind you have some advantages. So they should never be able to force you to stop (unless they have a bigger, meaner, faster 4x4)

I would have tried to ring the Police (000) if possible. Hands free or not. It is more important to survive the situation than to worry about whether you may be booked for use of a phone. It also may provide a record that you did ring the Police which could be handy later.

One thing I would not do, never, ever is pull into a service station. It is not a safe refuge. Thinking about that statement I am wondering how few safe refuges there would be where one could pull over and stop and be confident that the drama would be over. I can't think of any that don't have issues. Food for thought and a worry.

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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:43

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:43
Yes flynnie , we pretty much analysed it the same - makes you aware that you need to lock in those advantages with keeping fuel up in the car , knowing your GPS and making sure you can use the phone if in range.

The 4wding advantage was high on my list , and under some circumstances you can just turn across the median strip - but in the dark I couldn't ascertain if the road where such that I could get across and the follower couldn't.

Another weakness I will correct is that I did not have the person who helped me's phone contact as it wasn't a regular contact and the radios were the main tool I used.
Robin Miller

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Reply By: Motherhen - Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 23:35

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 23:35
Scary stuff. Why isn't there an RBT roadblock when you need one? Our daughter had an incident with an ex boyfriend some years ago. She phoned the Police to say he was trying to run her off the road. They replied they were too busy scraping dead bodies off the road and similarly serious stuff and would not attend. She saw an RBT block and turned towards it. She got through - he didn't.


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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:44

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:44
Wouldn't that be just a sensational outcome Motherhen ! Smart girl
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Reply By: get outmore - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 04:12

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 04:12
the first and last time I escalated things wa 15 years ago a crap box HQ nudged me from behind at the lights (I was in a camry)- coming from work I waved a 12 inch butches knife out the back window

the 2 guys jumped out with meat cleavers and tried opening the door
- I pulled out through traffick and took off
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:56

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:56
I guess thats the issue with projecting a threat into the unknown getoutmore, but sounds like you have a better response now.
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Reply By: Richard W (NSW) - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:12

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:12
Very sensible course of action.
Sounds like a persistent bugger.
Makes you wonder what his intentions were?
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:49

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 07:49
Thats the sad thing about some of this stuff Richard - you rarely get to talk.

I am sure that I would have cut someone off unknowingly or whatever in the past , and I would like to know what I did wrong - is it harder to see out the back of my car than I estimate - so could I improve somehow - but mostly all you get is rage and no path to doing better next time !
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Reply By: The Landy - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 09:10

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 09:10
Whilst inventive thinking on your feet, what was plan D if he got out of his car with a shotgun at the rendezvous point you organised?

Given the increasing occurrence of assault in road rage incidences why not call the police and organise a rendezvous point with them given you could not predict the final outcome, or influence it to any degree of certainty?

All food for thought mind you........

Cheers, The Landy
AnswerID: 418369

Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 12:01

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 12:01
Hi Landy

I will answer that in some detail as a couple of others have also suggested that approach.

Its easy to say phone the police but you need to really visualize yourself actually their under those circumstances, and as you do I believe it becomes less viable.

The most immediate thing is to protect yourself.
The only viable way to do this short term is to keep moving.

It took a lot of concentration to avoid stopping at traffic lights or
going down a blind alley when in the dark in an unknown area - I felt I
spent as much time looking at GPS as I did in the rear view mirror trying to
anticipate the following cars next move.

Phoning police in my case involves using (dialing) the phone in the dark while driving one handed I guess, and I haven't had any practise doing that.
It would require at a minimum for me to take my concentration off the current situation.
If you believe the traffic authorities then your put yourself at risk doing this even without the added pressure.
It was possible that I was being pressured into making some or any kind of mistake.
I can imagine someone like that arriving home -> "Darling I gave this idiot who cut me off a hard time and he ran into a pedestrain while trying to phone someone Ha Ha Ha"

Even the concept of organizing a rendevous point is more complex than it sounds in real life, its easy on TV but you don't know an area, a location has to be found, you still have to get their at night, the police then have to get there before you, you can't just say to the driver behing you "Stop for a few minutes while I figure this out".
In real life this could take another 20 minutes or more - and your phone battery could run flat during the process.

My first option choice was actually to contact the police but in a lower risk way by actually driving there.

The practical operational use of the radio to setup the endpoint was a lot easier to implement and did not require a long explanation.

You pose the question - what if he had a shotgun - well I guess there could always be someone with a bigger weapon but this is getting to the extreme of extremes and you can't cover everything
but I did consider the possibility of violence at the end.

My solution displayed to the driver, that he would have to make the first move knowing he would face two people and 2 big dogs I.E. 4 independant adversaries.

This clearly made him back down.
Your average police patrol car may have been less of an asset.

In this day of lying and litigation the solution left no doubt about who was the aggressor.
At a police station with 1 persons word against another things may not be so clear.
Robin Miller

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Follow Up By: The Landy - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 14:30

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 14:30
Understand fully where you are coming from, much harder to assess the best course when it is all unfolding and makes this post good food for thought!

What I find amazing about this type of incident is that the other party must have been going somewhere, yet decides to pursue you for over 30 minutes. Most ‘normal’ (is there such a thing) people would simply get on with it......

Oddly enough, I once witnessed a robbery and followed the perpetrator on foot , and at a safe distance, for about a kilometre, unknown to them. During that time I was constantly trying to work out what I actually intended to do, and despite having a phone I didn’t ring anyone, as I didn’t want to become distracted and lose sight of him. The upshot was I came across a policewoman (Assistant Commissioner) walking along the street and she arrested him.....but I have often wondered how it would have transpired had the policewoman not been there!

Cheers, The Landy
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Reply By: Nargun51 - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 10:13

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 10:13
Many years ago I owned a Suzuki Hatch (550cc of brute power; acceleration was measure by a calendar). It could just keep up with a flow of traffic.

I had the experience of a GQ Patrol with bull bar travelling a metre behind me in an attempt to get me to go faster on a narrow windy road. I was travelling at the speed limit but there was no place for me to safely pull off. Eventually, he overtook me on double lines just before a roundabout. He stopped, blocking the roundabout and got out and stood there with a D Maglight in his hand, hitting it into the palm of his other hand.

I made a great show of locking the doors. I grabbed a piece of paper and wrote his rego number in big letters and held it against the windscreen. At the time mobile phones with cameras had just hit the market; I picked up my mobile phone and pointed it at him as if I was taking a photo (the phone didn’t have a camera!). Didn’t see him again!

Have used this trick again, where a person I had bipped as a warning for coming into my lane without looking, kept on changing lanes to stop me overtaking. Told my daughter in the passenger seat to pick up the (camera equipped) mobile and make a great show of filming the car. He soon turned off.

Wouldn’t work against a drunken/drugged sociopath, but it is highly successful for yobbos or hoons.

A mobile phone (if you are in range) is your best defence. There have been a few successful defences in Victoria of people being booked where they have been able to prove the cops have forced them to exceed the speed limit by travelling too close. If your call was to 000, you should have a good defence in Court by proving that you made the call at the time in fear of your safety. Probably wouldn’t do the cops career prospects any good either
AnswerID: 418379

Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 18:46

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 18:46
Hi Nargun

I like you approach and outcome to those events , one does have to think quickly sometimes, and accessing the adversary is central to ones actions.

This was a problem with this incident, by being in the dark and unable to access things I felt I could only plan for the worst and this was soon backed up by the semi-professional approach this driver seemed to have to his following task.

I have never seen the hunting behaviour before - I have learnt something -
and I wonder how many other exploroz people have.

It all meant to me that I could not afford loss of concentration to use a phone as explained better in my reply to landy.

I think though that you are right that as a general rule if you had to make 1 reccomendation then using a phone is probably it.

Robin Miller

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Follow Up By: OzTroopy - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 10:02

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 10:02
Whilst robins post is in relation to to an obviously disturbed person ..... and I congratulate him on his choice of actions ....

Its interesting to read the read the issue of "autorities" vehicles being used in an aggressive manner.

Similiar circumstance about ten year ago .... A vehicle "staliking" me ....

Rang the police ...... provided the other vehicles rego number & description ....

...... and listened to the radio converstaion on the scanner ... about whether my vehicle was going to get pulled over for anything after it had been followed around for so long.

I made another phone call ..... to OOO .... just to make sure the situation didnt get kept "in house"

Phone calls were easier to make back then tho ... raised buttons allowed easy feeling by thumb for the bottom centre " 0 " .... or any button .... if one bothered to memorise the positions.

X 2 on not expecting 24hr service stations to be of assistance .... If the console operater sees trouble ... they just hit the panic button and lock em selves in and watch the show ...... same at 7-11 stores etc.
FollowupID: 688609

Reply By: Member - Brian R (WA) - Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 16:39

Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 16:39
great that you came out unhurt.

go with the assault charge, then leave it behind you.
well done for keeping your safety first
AnswerID: 418436

Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 07:56

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 07:56
Should do but its to much hassle - however , not sure if its a co-incidence or not but even though this happened a while back during the course of this thread information came to me that a vaguely similar person/car was being sought for other more serious events and that this person got a heavy grilling instead - sweet justice !
Robin Miller

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Reply By: Geoff (Newcastle, NSW) - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 11:11

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 11:11
Hello Robin,
I'd say you handled an extremely tense and troubling scenario extremely well!

My guess would be you aren't the first person this obviously disturbed person has stalked.

At some point in the chain in the words of my retired crown sergeant neighbour, "you've got to use the law to put a brand on these bar****ds they carry for life"

Nobody should have to go through what you did.

Landcruiser HDJ78,
Grey hair is hereditary, you get it from children. Baldness is caused by watching the Wallabies.

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AnswerID: 418524

Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 07:16

Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 07:16
Thanks Geoff - I would not like to think of the outcome if it was my wife or someone not so familar with using the tools I did to handle the problem.
Robin Miller

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Reply By: Nigel Migraine - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 19:08

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 19:08
This post has been read by the moderation team and has been moderated due to a breach of The Trolling Rule .

Forum Moderation Team
AnswerID: 418581

Reply By: Member - Graham H (QLD) - Tuesday, Jun 01, 2010 at 12:37

Tuesday, Jun 01, 2010 at 12:37
Only thing I can think of to say is watch out he wasnt smart enough to write YOUR rego down.

IF he did he can find out where the vehicle and perhaps, you live.

Good reason the have your cars registered address at a PO box no.

AnswerID: 419093

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