Safe overtaking is a skill that every motorcyclist needs to master in order to ride safely. Here are a few helpful pointers that'll solidify what you already know, and in case of new riders, will prime you on what to do and what not to do while overtaking another vehicle.
Visibility is everything
If you cannot see past the vehicle ahead of you, do NOT overtake. While this may sound like commonsense, you'd be stunned to know that more than half the accidents caused while overtaking is due to 'blind overtaking'.
Faster equals safer
Overtaking another vehicle is best done as fast as possible. Long overtaking moves are not a good idea as they expose you to multiple risks such as oncoming traffic, direction changes by the vehicle that's being overtaken, road imperfections, stray cattle and more. Therefore, shift down a gear or two for maximum pick up, and overtake as swiftly as possible. Note: This doesn't mean you overspeed. Always stay within speed limits. If the vehicle you want to overtake is higher than the speed limit, slow down, and don't overtake such a vehicle.
Check your rear-view mirrors before overtaking
This is an often-overlooked part of the overtaking maneuver, and it can lead to nasty surprises if you suddenly decide to swerve and carry out an overtaking maneuver while another vehicle is already in the fast (overtaking) lane.
While honking must be kept to a minimum at most times, it's essential while overtaking. A quick press on the horn button just to alert the vehicle you're about to overtake is a good practice that increases safety levels.
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