Overtaking moving vehicles on dual carriageways :
If there is a vehicle in front that you want to overtake try to be thinking far enough ahead, so that you begin your lane change before you have to adjust your speed. If you slow down you will lose your advantage over the traffic behind you, they will begin to overhaul you, and you won't be able to pull out.
Try to make sure that whenever you overtake another vehicle that you change lanes early, well before you get near to it. You don't want to be in a situation where you are within your stopping distance of the car in front, and it suddenly brakes. Always try to point past anything in front, and not at it.
When you are overtaking a row of vehicles look for closing gaps between them, this shows that they are likely to pull out (photo below):
Try never to remain in another’s blind-spot as they may change lanes without seeing you. On three lane sections never pull into someone’s blind-spot, because they may begin to pull out as you pull in. If someone moves towards you, or might, use your horn to warn them, but don't rely on them hearing it!
Overtaking on test:
In a test situation, when you must make adequate progress: If someone is moving at well under the speed limit in front of you - overtake it as soon as possible. If you hesitate it will be more difficult.
If the vehicle is slow and just exiting a roundabout try to overtake if possible while it is accelerating. You can overtake through a roundabout if you have to. On national speed limit dual carriageways be confident driving at 70 mph when the road is clear.
Frequently asked questions:
Sometimes I need to get across lanes quickly into a gap, how should I do it?
The safest way to get across lanes more quickly is not to swing across suddenly, but to keep a gradual line, and accelerate more. Be sure that before you move across that your distance from the car behind is increasing or at least constant. If the gap is decreasing, don't change lanes, unless they are a very long way back.
The move should always be gradual because it keeps your car in a straight line and stable, you can easily change back if there is trouble ahead, and it is predictable for other drivers.
How do I safely get across lanes into small gap?
The best method of doing this is to postion yourself alongside the centre of the gap between the cars in the other lane. Then indicate, then move slightly towards the centre line. You are trying to encourage the vehicle behind to volunteer to drop back. Once you get a reaction from them, move over a little more, maybe straddling the centre line. Hold in this postion until the car behind has dropped back, and the car in front is far enough ahead for you to be able to move completely over.
Remember to always keep a safety gap of at least 1 second, preferably 2 seconds, in front of you. Or an escape route if the car in front brakes.