Overtaking Lessons Note

It’s dangerous to overtake another vehicle as it’s difficult to judge the space required to complete the manoeuvre safely. Be very careful, and if in doubt, don’t pull out! Both single and multi-lane overtaking can be dangerous.

Overtaking safely

Always make sure that the road ahead is clear and that you have a large enough gap in oncoming traffic - don’t create a dangerous situation because you have short patience.

When you’re being overtaken
  • You must not increase your speed
  • You must keep left and allow space for the overtaking vehicle to pass
  • You must keep within your lane
Be carefull if you're overtaking more than one cehicle at a time as it increases the risk of a crash

Overtaking tips

  • You must not drive faster than the speed limit
  • Before changing lanes, make sure that the vehicle behind or in front is not about to overtake
  • Increase visibility by turning on the headlights
  • Don’t move back to the original lane before you can see both headlights of the vehicle in your rearview mirror
  • When overtaking, you still have to give way when changing lanes

Situations when you must not overtake

There are also a number of situations when it's either illegal or too dangerous to overtake:

  • If you must cross a single continuous line or a double dividing line with a continuous line closest to you
  • If approaching a curve, crest or any other situation with limited vision
  • When another vehicle has stopped or is stop
  • If the road is narrow and you are unable to stay on the sealed part of the road, unless overtaking in a safe manner at a low speed
You are NOT allowed to overtake in any of these scenarios

Overtaking dangerously can be fatal. You should consider if an overtake is necessary and make sure that you always perform a safe and legal overtaking manoeuvre.

Overtaking when there are oncoming vehicles

In this situation, the oncoming vehicle is too close, and you shouldn't overtake

Be careful not to underestimate the space and time needed to perform a safe overtake. The space between you and an oncoming vehicle will quickly disappear as you are both travelling toward each other. If you’re unsure, don’t attempt to overtake.

Situations with limited view

In a curve like this, it's impossible to see if there is any oncoming traffic

Don’t pull out if your view is blocked or limited. You never know what might be behind the next curve or hill. At many places, dangerous overtaking stretches will be indicated by variations of continuous dividing lines.

Overtaking on the left

The car to the left is legally overtaking the car waiting to turn right

In general, you must overtake on the right. However, if safe, you can overtake a vehicle on the left side if:

  • the vehicle is waiting to turn right or make a U-turn from the centre of the road
  • the vehicle is stationary
  • travelling on a multi-lane road with lane markings and you can safely overtake using a marked lane to the left

Overtaking on a road without lane markings

If the road has no lane markings, you should overtake on the right side of vehicles. Only overtake on the left if the vehicle is stationary or indicating a right turn or U-turn.

Unless you're Greg. don't overtake a vehicle acting like this
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