Van drivers will usually tailgate other drivers if they think they are going too slow and are trying to speed them up. They might also be tailgating you if they are distracted and not paying attention to how close they are to you. Either way, it is a dangerous and irresponsible way to drive.
Tailgating is a common practice amongst many drivers, not just van drivers. It is often done by people who are impatient and are trying to pressure you into driving faster.
This can be very dangerous for you and the tailgater as it can cause an accident and distract you both from the road. No matter why they are tailgating, it is not a safe way to drive for anyone.
They Tailgate When They Want You to Drive Faster
Van drivers will usually tailgate the worst when they want the person in front of them to drive faster. This is the most common way for drivers to communicate their frustration with the driver in front of them.
Though this may be understandable if the vehicle in front is going below the speed limit, tailgating is still never the solution.
Many van drivers drive on a schedule and have deadlines that have to be met, this can cause them to be more impatient with other drivers. This often leads them to tailgate and act aggressively towards other drivers on the road.
Unfortunately, this is a reputation that many van drivers have acquired since many have a tendency to tailgate other vehicles.
Van Drivers Can Tailgate if They are Distracted
Another less malicious cause for van drivers tailgating is that they might just be distracted. This is very common as most van drivers tend to drive for long hours at a time, making them sleepy and distracted.
This line of work can often become tedious as they are driving for hours at a time for several days in a row. This makes it easy for van drivers to become less aware of their surroundings.
This can certainly become dangerous as they could accidentally hit another vehicle due to their lack of attention.
This is why it is a good idea not to do anything back at a tailgater since they may not be paying attention. If you were to try to brake check them, you could cause a collision as they may not be paying attention.
Even if tailgating isn’t meant to be malicious, it is still a danger to other drivers on the road. A distracted driver is even more dangerous than an aggressive driver when it comes to tailgating.
If you suspect that the van driver is falling asleep, you could even honk your horn to alert them to the road. Only do this if you are very sure that they do not mean to tailgate you, otherwise avoid honking at them at all.
Tailgating is Aggressive Driving
Tailgating isn’t necessarily road rage; road rage is much more aggressive and dangerous. It would usually include chasing you on the road, trying to hit your vehicle, or driving alongside you to intimate you.
Tailgating is much more like aggressive driving as it is not as harmful and is much more common. Thankfully, tailgating rarely ends badly, as it is usually someone just losing their temper as they drive.
Tailgating only becomes road rage if the driver is actually trying to hit you or push you off the road. In that case, it is best to try to get out of the way safely and quickly.
If you think that a van driver is tailgating you very aggressively, to the point of becoming a danger. You could look for contact information on their van, many companies will have contact info included with their logo.
If that isn’t the case, you could look up the company to complain about the van driver’s reckless driving.
What to Do if You Are Being Tailgated
If you are being tailgated by a van driver, there are a few things that you should do and a few things that you shouldn’t do. In this kind of situation, you have to go off of the best safety practices instead of going with how you are feeling.
It is very easy to get a little hot under the collar when a driver is tailgating you but it is never a good idea to become aggressive back. This will only make the situation worse and create a more dangerous environment.
If a driver is tailgating you on the road, here are a few things to do and not to do to try to deescalate the situation.
Do Not Brake Check Them
One of the worst things that you could do is brake check the tailgater. This would mean you tap on the brakes, causing them to have to slam on their brakes.
This may teach them a lesson, but it is a dangerous thing to do as a driver. Not only could it further irritate them, but it could also cause an accident.
Driving at various and unpredictable speeds could result in you being rear-ended or having you or the tailgater drive off of the road. As irritating as they may be, this is not the solution to their tailgating.
Slow Down Gradually
Possibly the best thing to do when you are being tailgated is to slow down very gradually. Do not do this quickly but very slowly, showing them that you will not be tailgated.
This action will allow them to pass you on the road and end the tailgating. Otherwise, they might continue to tailgate you or far surpass the speed limit to pass you on the road.
This safe solution avoids any more aggression and allows you both to part ways safely.
Avoid Interacting with the Tailgater
Whatever you do, try your best to avoid interacting with someone who is tailgating you. Doing this will help to prevent any further aggression from the tailgater.
You do not want to make hand gestures or try to call out to them. Avoid honking your horn as well, as doing any of these things is very distracting and can result in an accident.
It’s also best to not try to irritate a tailgater any further as they are already acting irrationally, which can be dangerous to other drivers.
It is a distraction and will only further irritate them, making it more likely that they will escalate the situation. Putting you, themselves, and other drivers in even more danger.
Pull-Over or Turn
If they are not willing to pass you and have continued to tailgate you for some time, the best thing to do is to try to get out of their way.
The ideal way to do this is to make a turn off of the road to remove yourself from the situation. This is the best way to get away from a tailgater; then you can drive back onto the road once they have gotten ahead.
If that is not an option for you, you could try pulling over at the nearest location; the only problem is that they may follow you. If you see them following you to the roadside, try to get back onto the road to avoid an altercation.
You never want to pull over with them as this will only escalate the situation, and it could get out of hand very fast.
Tailgating is Very Bad Driving
No matter why the van driver is tailgating another vehicle, it is always bad driving and very dangerous as well. Van drivers especially need to take more care as they are in larger vehicles that can cause more damage.
No matter how much of a hurry you are in or how tired you are, there is no excuse for dangerous driving. Especially when you are a professional van driver and are paid to drive.
All drivers on the road have to be careful and safe in order for everyone to get to where they are going. One tailgater can cause a huge issue on the road, endangering all of the other vehicles.
There is never a good reason to tailgate as it could very well lead to a serious accident with another vehicle. That is why most vehicles involved in a rear-end collision will be held responsible, as there should always be enough space between cars on the road.
A lot of things can happen to cause the car ahead of you to stop or slow down, and if you are tailgating, this can easily cause an accident.
Not only is tailgating bad driving and dangerous for everyone else on the road. It can result in you being fired if your boss finds out that you are tailgating people.
It is your boss’s neck on the line, when it comes to van drivers driving irresponsibly. It reflects badly on you and on the company that you work for. It could even go on your record and make getting another van driving job next to impossible.