NORFOLK, Va. - Shootings on interstates have been an issue in Hampton Roads for the past eight months. Police are asking for your help after the latest one took place early Tuesday morning on I-264 near the Brambleton Avenue exit in Norfolk.
The latest interstate shooting has some drivers in Hampton Roads on edge while on the roads.
“It's dangerous,” Norfolk resident Rhonda Brickhouse told News 3. “It's a dangerous society that we live in.”
Brickhouse is a mother, grandmother and registered gun owner. She said recent interstate shootings, including Tuesday's, hit too close to home and weigh heavily on her mind when she’s behind the wheel.
“Honest to God, it's really pathetic,” she said. “You look at somebody the wrong way, they follow you, they might shoot you or whatever. You don't know what vendetta somebody might have against you, and you didn't do anything to a person.”
Tuesday's shooting is one of six shootings to have taken place on interstates and highways this summer in Hampton Roads: three in June and three so far in July.
The interstate shootings are also sparking action with driving experts, giving you tips to give you peace of mind while driving.
“It's an astonishing statistic, and it's a number that we don't want to see growing and growing and growing,” Ryan Adcock with AAA Tidewater told News 3.
The recent activity is leading AAA Tidewater to get the word out on what to do and not to do when it comes to dealing with road rage.
Their tips include don't respond to angry drivers, avoid eye contact and don't get out of your car.
Also, experts say if you're dealing with lots of emotions, do not get behind the wheel.
“It's just the littlest thing that can push them over the edge,” Adcock said. “Coming a little bit too close to the car [or] cutting them off a little bit.”
Other tips from AAA Tidewater include not encroaching on another driver's space, dimming your headlights from high beams with oncoming traffic and staying to the right to allow faster traffic to move by.
If you need to use your horn, experts recommend just do a couple of quick taps instead of one long blast and consider investing in a dash camera.
“Whether you're traveling with your family, or you're traveling by yourself, it's just important to be safe at all times,” Brickhouse said.
Virginia State Police sent this statement regarding the recent interstate shootings:
“Each of these shootings are investigated on their own, unique merits. Each one is treated equally by our special agents and are aggressively and actively pursued until solved. We want to solve these cases for the victims. We want the public to know we take these shootings very seriously and the Virginia State Police is committed to making our interstates as safe as possible...and we will keep pursuing these cases until an arrest is made.
Unfortunately we do not have more troopers on the roadway. As seen with the local agencies, we too are also experiencing a shortage of manpower, and difficulty in recruiting for the law enforcement position.
We know there are people out there with the information we need to solve every one of these shootings. We know those individuals to trust us and come forward. Arresting the people responsible for these shootings is the only way we can truly make our roads and communities safer. Call VSP at #77 or 757-424-6800, or email us at email@example.com.
How to avoid being a victim? The safety tips vary just as much as each case does. Be aware of your surroundings when driving, do not engage with other drivers - no matter how aggressive or annoying they may be. Do not engage in aggressive driving behaviors - don't tailgate, don't cut people off, don't speed...don't give other drivers an excuse to retaliate.”
As for Brickhouse, she wants to see a curb in the violence that's impacted her family especially while on the highways.
“I lost two cousins to gun violence, and I wouldn't wish that on nobody,” Brickhouse added.
Experts also say it’s important to allow enough room around your car so you can escape situations if needed.
If necessary, along with #77 for Virginia State Police, you can also call 911.