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Why do some people engage in risky driving behaviors?

On Behalf of | May 8, 2023 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

Sharing the road with people who engage in risky behaviors can be dangerous. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines risky driving as driving in a manner that endangers or is likely to endanger people or property. 

But why would a driver do this? This guide discusses four factors that contribute to risky driving behaviors.


A drunk driver is more likely to engage in aggressive behaviors due to the effects of alcohol. For example, alcohol impairs judgment, which means a driver can make wrong conclusions, including the distance between them and another vehicle or their speed. 

Further, alcohol is a depressant – it leads to slow reaction times. A driver may not respond as quickly as required, and this can lead to an accident.


A significant percentage of people experiencing emotions, especially anger, frustration or sadness, engage in risky behaviors. They may have had the feeling before getting behind the wheel or may have received bad news while driving. These emotions can cloud someone’s judgment or can take their attention away from the road that they may not even notice their behavior.


Complacent drivers may rate their own driving skills very highly, which can make them overconfident. They may be competent drivers, but this does not make them immune to accidents. A complacent driver is much more likely to engage in risky behaviors that lead to an accident. 

Peer pressure 

Peer pressure can contribute to risky driving behaviors, especially among teen drivers. One may speed or drive while drunk because their friends are doing so or they want to prove a certain point.

If a risk-taking driver leads you to an accident, it will be best to get legal help to receive the compensation you deserve.