Situational (state) anger and driving Academic Article uri icon


  • Aggression and anger have been related to crash involvement, but the direct causal relation between situational anger and driving choices and abilities has not been examined empirically. In this study, 15 licensed drivers drove twice in a driving simulator, each time following one of two emotion inductions based on event recall: angry and neutral. Following anger induction, the drivers crossed more yellow traffic lights (p < .01) and tended to drive faster (non-significant). However, performance on emergency manoeuvres were unaffected by anger. In conclusion, it appears that state anger affects driving behaviour by increasing risk taking, without necessarily compromising the skilled driving behaviour, at least as far as these behaviours were evaluated in emergency situations in simulated driving.

publication date

  • January 1, 2012