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The dark side of passing on the right: why it's a gamble you don't want to take

Updated: Jan 20

Passing on the right on the highway can be a dangerous maneuver for a number of reasons. Here are some of the main ones:

  1. Limited visibility: When you are trying to pass on the right, you are often in the blind spot of the vehicle you are attempting to pass. This means that the driver of that vehicle may not be able to see you, increasing the risk of a collision. Additionally, if you are passing on the right shoulder of the road, you may not have a clear view of what is ahead of you, such as debris, pedestrians, or other vehicles entering the shoulder.

  2. Limited space: The right lane of the highway is often used as an exit lane or a passing lane, so there may not be enough room for you to safely pass another vehicle on the right. If you try to pass in a narrow space, you may not have enough time to react if the vehicle in front of you suddenly changes lanes or slows down.

  3. Increased risk of collision with oncoming traffic: When you pass on the right, you are entering the lane of oncoming traffic, which increases the risk of a head-on collision. This is especially dangerous if you are passing on the right shoulder of the road, as oncoming vehicles may not be expecting you to be there.

  4. Increased risk of sideswipe collisions: If you are passing on the right and the driver of the vehicle you are attempting to pass decides to change lanes at the same time, you may collide with the side of their vehicle. This is known as a sideswipe collision and can be especially dangerous at high speeds.

  5. Increased risk of rear-end collisions: If you are passing on the right and the driver of the vehicle you are attempting to pass decides to slow down or stop, you may not have enough time to react and may collide with the back of their vehicle.

  6. Violation of traffic laws: In many states, passing on the right is illegal. If you are caught passing on the right, you may face a traffic ticket or other penalties.

  7. Increased risk of accidents in construction zones: Many highways have construction zones with lane shifts or narrowed lanes. If you try to pass on the right in a construction zone, you may not have enough room to safely pass and could collide with a construction vehicle or equipment.

In conclusion, passing on the right on the highway is a dangerous maneuver that can lead to serious accidents and injuries. It is always best to stay in your lane and wait for a safe opportunity to pass. If you do need to pass another vehicle, make sure you have enough room and visibility, and always watch for oncoming traffic and pedestrians.


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