KING COUNTY -- As you head into Memorial Day weekend take note of aggressive driving.
When you spend a lot of time on the road, you see it all.
“I see a lot of aggressive drivers,” Trooper John Pierce said.
Aggressive driving can range from going 20 miles over the speed limit to all types of bad behavior.
“Honking, flashing, headlights, giving somebody the middle finger,” Pierce said.
Law enforcement cannot stop you for a middle finger, but they can if things escalate.
“In a couple of cases I would catch people actively road raging cutting people off, braking, going from 60 miles per hour to 15 miles per hour in front of each other because somebody did something to push their button,” Pierce said.
According to Inrix, the Seattle area has the sixth worst traffic congestion in the entire country and the 58th in the world.
Traffic is one reason why troopers believe aggressive driving is going up.
In King County alone on I-5, state troopers saw more than 500 cases between 2017 and 2018.
In 2018 they logged more than 7,800 aggressive cases.
Troopers who work in Pierce County say they are also seeing the same trend.
“Just right now coming down South we saw a guy cut in front of us, cut in front of the red car in front of us,” driver Hector Cons said.
The worst thing you can do is engage.
“I guess mind over matter,” driver Brian Lyden said.
Trooper Pierce says even if someone cuts you off most of the times it`s an accident, not intentional.
“Don`t just automatically assume maliciousness,” Pierce said.
But if someone is intentionally coming after you, Pierce says find a way out.
“I can change lanes, I can move over, I can take an exit, take those extra 30 seconds and cool off,” Pierce said.
Because a split second bad decision could end in hefty fines or even worse, a tragic accident.