Road rage goes virtual on Aussie motoring website

Wed Mar 25, 2009 5:41am EDT
 
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SYDNEY (Reuters Life!) - Australian motorists are being encouraged to vent their anger on the Internet, and not on each other, via a new website that aims to make roads safer.

RoadTube.com.au, styled on popular video-sharing website Youtube, is part of an initiative of the National Roads and Motorists Association (NRMA) designed to ease drivers' frustration and cut road rage.

Last week, the NRMA also rolled out several video-camera and Internet-enabled booths in New South Wales state, Australia's biggest, to make it even easier for motorists to vent.

"The whole campaign is about giving people a voice and mobilizing the motoring community because there's a growing sense of frustration that they're just not being listened to," NRMA spokesman Peter Khoury told Reuters.

According to the New South Wales statistics bureau, more than 100 people were found guilty of predatory or menacing driving in 2007, offences punishable by up to 5 years in jail.

So far there have been just over 100 posts on the website but Khoury said he expected the number to rise as the site was promoted among the public and the NRMA's 2.1 million members.

Petrol prices, parking fees, tolls and speed cameras are among the main gripes.

But just like on the road, swearing and rude gestures are not allowed on the website, Khoury warned.

(Reporting by Pauline Askin; Editing by Miral Fahmy and Paul Tait)