HC Deb 01 December 1965 vol 721 cc1414-5
19. Mr. Dance

asked the Minister of Transport if he will give publicity to the fact that a driver in the outside lane in a 40 miles per hour restricted area who is driving at 40 miles per hour has no legal obligation to move out of that lane to enable another driver to overtake him.

Mr. Swingler

In practice motorists should observe the Highway Code and keep to the left except when overtaking and turning to the right. It is relevant that fire-engines, ambulances and police cars are not, in general, subject to speed limits. The legal position is broadly as stated by the hon. Member.

Mr. Dance

I am seeking information and I am grateful for that answer. When going down to London Airport, for example, on a dual carriageway, when there is a car behind flashing and tooting, although one is going at the correct speed limit for that road, should one draw over to the left and allow the following car to pass? If so, is not one then conniving at the breaking of the law?

Mr. Swingler

There is no legal obligation, but we hope that all drivers will drive in a manner which will avoid accidents and dangers on the road.

Sir M. Redmayne

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that a major problem is involved here and that it will become even more acute with the proposed 70 m.p.h. limit and may well require special attention by the Minister if there is not to be the most extraordinary congestion on three-lane roads?

Mr. Swingler

Yes, Sir. But speed limits have been in operation in this country for a very long time and it is for drivers not only to observe the law of the land, but to exercise common sense in their driving.

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