Note: This article first appeared on Crosstown and is shared with their permission in partnership with Los Angeleno. You can subscribe to Crosstown for crime, traffic and air quality news here.
Incidents tumbled as the coronavirus altered driving patterns.
The number of road rage incidents in the City of Los Angeles has dropped during the time of the coronavirus. According to LAPD data, from March 1-July 31 there were 33.5% fewer incidents of road rage, with 180 reports, down from 271 in the same time frame last year.
Traffic decreased substantially throughout the city in mid-March, when Mayor Eric Garcetti ordered all non-essential businesses to close in the effort to halt the spread of COVID-19. A Crosstown analysis found that even as the economy began to slowly reopen two months later, car volume remained low, as many people were out of work, were working from home or simply were not driving for errands or to socialize.
The 35 road rage incidents in March were down significantly from the 53 in the same month last year. The decline has been mostly consistent, with at least 22 fewer incidents than in each similar month in 2019. The lone exception was May, when the 46 incidents equaled last year’s figure.
Road rage reports have dropped since then, with 39 incidents in June, according to the LAPD, and 33 in July.
Although there are varying degrees of severity of road rage, the consequences can be serious.
According to police data, at 9:30 p.m. on March 30, a suspect forced his way into a 26-year-old woman’s car on the 500 block of North Ardmore Avenue in East Hollywood. A police report said the woman was a victim of battery simple assault.