How to Overtake Safely?
Overtaking requires great skill, experience and confidence.
If you think that there is an opportunity to overtake, the first question must be ‘Is it safe?’ You need to consider a few potential hazards:
- Is there any oncoming traffic (if so, can you overtake without making them slow down)?
- Is there a bend coming up which can block your vision?
- How wide is the road; is there room to overtake with oncoming traffic ahead?
- Are there any side roads alongside where you are thinking of overtaking. Never overtake as you pass a side road; a car could be emerging left as you overtake.
Here is the step-by-step procedure, once you are certain it is safe to overtake:
- Change down a gear (by doing so, you are in a better accelerating gear and are ready to overtake).
- Check your interior and then right door mirror to make sure no one is overtaking you.
- Indicate right
- Move out and accelerate, at least three car lengths back from the vehicle in front.
- Allow a 1.5 meter gap as you pass the vehicle.
- As you pass the vehicle, check interior, left door mirrors and indicate left.
- Allow 3 car lengths past the vehicle before steering back to the left lane.
The distance to move out and back when overtaking varies according to your speed. At 70 mph., for example, you would need a 5 car length gap before and after overtaking.
Rick Hardcaslte (ADI)