Road rage rising in China

Updated: 2015-12-02 08:50


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BEIJING - Chinese traffic police have handled more than 17 million cases involving road rage like arbitrary lane changes and dangerous overtaking this year, as the world's largest car market struggles to equip its drivers with better road etiquette.

As part of its campaign to educate drivers, the Ministry of Public Security described road rage as a major traffic safety hazard on Tuesday, the eve of National Traffic Safety Day.

Though the number of cases handled by police has only risen by 2.8 percent year on year, there are more tragedies involving road rage. In 2013, 80,200 accidents were attributed to anger behind the wheel, a 4.9-percent year-on-year increase. The number rose by 2.4 percent in 2014.

In May, a video showing a male driver beating a female driver in retaliation for a dangerous lane change left many Chinese people stunned.

More recently, a driver in northeast China's Heilongjiang Province was lambasted by the public after he intentionally forced an ambulance to pull over several times.

According to the ministry, China has more than 169 million car owners.

It also warned drivers, at 322 million now, of "distracted driving," which it said caused 21,570 deaths in 2014.