Overtaking Safety - avoiding vehicles turning right

Just a quick one this week, but its based on a number of incidents that have recently been reported on www.visordown.com.

If you are trying to overtake a vehicle and he is signalling / cancelling the signal / speeding up / slowing down / signalling again - you get the picture - HANG BACK AND WAIT!!! Don't go for the overtake and get wiped out by the vehicle suddenly changing lanes or turning right!

Why? Read the clues. He's driving erratically. Something other than driving is clearly on his mind.

What are the possible reasons? He could well be lost in a strange town and looking for a route to his destination. Just because YOU know where all the side roads are, and where junctions are sited and how they are designed, don't assume everyone else does.

He could well be looking for a particular road or building. This applies particularly if it is a van - he could well be a delivery driver and he's looking for his drop... if you've ever worked as a courier or a van driver (and I did for many years) you'll know that street numbers and house names are bloody awkward to spot, and frequently completely invisible... so be patient, give him a moment and he'll probably be out your way... but whilst he is looking for his drop or turn, his attention is not focussed on what is coming up alongside.

It may simply be an inexperienced driver at the wheel, or even a foreign visitor not used to driving on our side of the road. It might just be someone who is completely inept.

Whatever the reason it's up to YOU to stay out of trouble, and the solution in every case is clear - patience!

Final point - if you do go for the overtake, give him chance to see you in the mirror, pass decisively but slowly enough to take avoiding action, and DON'T BE AFRAID TO SOUND THE HORN - it's what its there for. If he's got his nose buried in an A-Z or a pile of consignment notes, it'll make him look or at least think twice before swinging into that side road or delivery bay!!!

Overtake safely out there!