Florida Traffic Laws – What Is the Duty of a Driver Overtaking and Passing a Vehicle?

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The driver of any vehicle has certain duties when overtaking and passing another vehicle that is traveling in the same direction as the overtaking vehicle. The following are duties of the driver of an overtaking vehicle:
1. The driver of the overtaking vehicle shall pass to the left of the overtaken vehicle.
2. The driver of the overtaking vehicle shall not return to the right side of the roadway until safely clearing the overtaken vehicle.
3. When overtaking a bicycle or other nonmotorized vehicle, the driver of the overtaking vehicle must pass the bicycle or nonmotorized vehicle at a safe distance not less than 3 feet.
These duties are provided under Title XXIII – Motor Vehicles, Chapter 316 – State Uniform Traffic Control, Section 316.083 – Overtaking and Passing a Vehicle.
Passing and/or overtaking another vehicle can be a dangerous task, especially on two-lane roads, rural roads or when attempting such action at night. Florida drivers should always pass on the left, given the appropriate signal, not speed and ensure a safe distance between his or her vehicle and the overtaken vehicle.

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