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There seems to be a common myth around overtaking that could not only cost you your licence, but is also risking your life in the process! According to official government figures, UK drivers are often breaking the speed limit when overtaking. Statistics show that in 2017 almost 8000 vehicles were involved in collision when overtaking, and safety experts are urging drivers to avoid putting themselves and others at risk, and to watch their speed when overtaking.

The speed limit is the absolute maximum you can drive at, and this includes overtaking another vehicle. Exceeding this speed limit, no matter the reason, is not only dangerous but also illegal! It could result in points on your licence, a heavy fine, or for repeat offenders being banned from driving entirely.

Overtaking another vehicle should only be done “when it is safe and legal to do so”. This does not just mean where the road markings indicate that overtaking is allowed, but also that all other rules of the road must be obeyed, including the speed limit. If you speed whilst overtaking, then you are not overtaking safely or legally!

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) has warned against this common problem, and a spokesperson cautioned that “the common-sense message is do not overtake unless you are sure you can complete the manoeuvre safely and without causing risk or inconvenience to another road user.” They advised that “although you should complete an overtaking manoeuvre quickly, never exceed the speed limit for the road.”

If you are caught speeding whilst overtaking, the fines reach up to £2500, you could get 6 points on your licence, and if you get 12 points or more within any three-year period then you will have your licence revoked. So be safe, follow the rules of the road at all times, and don’t speed when overtaking! It definitely isn’t worth it.