Can you break the speed limit to pass?

Many people break the speed limit when passing another car. For instance, the front car may be driving at 50 miles per hour in a 55-mph zone. The rear car catches up. When they reach a passing zone, that driver just puts the gas to the floor. They hit 70 mph as they pass, then slow back down to 55 once they change back into the right lane.

But is this legal? It’s not. You’re supposed to follow the speed limit. If you do not have enough space to pass safely without breaking that limit, then you’re not supposed to pass.

This is something that people often overlook. You could get pulled over for going 70 in a 55-mph zone, which comes with a significant ticket. You may argue that you were just trying to pass safely, but you can still get a ticket.

So, why do people do this? The reason is often that they think it really is safer. They are trying to limit their exposure to oncoming traffic. The less time they spend in that lane, the smaller the exposure level. They’re willing to speed, illegal or otherwise, so that they can get back into the proper lane quickly.

The logic of this thought process makes sense, but the police would maintain that you should just slow down and not pass at all. If you really wanted to stay safe, that would be the way to do it.

If you didn’t know that and you got a speeding ticket or more serious driving charges, be sure you know your legal rights.