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Questions & info about the Motor Vehicle Act. Mature discussion only.

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Old 11-04-2009, 03:04 PM   #1
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Officers Please Help! Drv. Without Consideration

My question involves a careless driving ticket from the Province of: British Columbia

I have been charged under section 144 (1), (b) of the British Columbia Motor Vehicle Act which states:

144 (1) A person must not drive a motor vehicle on a highway

(b) without reasonable consideration for other persons using the highway

(2) A person who contravenes subsection (1) (a) or (b) is liable on conviction to a fine of not less than $100 and, subject to this minimum fine, section 4 of the Offence Act applies.

Background information:
Peace Officer pulled me over after he observed me overtake a vehicle in front of me by pulling into the right hand lane of a two lane highway and I subsequently increased my rate of speed to well above the posted limit.

I was served a ticket for excessive speeding and driving without reasonable consideration. The officer specifically mentioned that I was receiving the 2nd, (careless driving), charge for moving into the right hand lane and passing the vehicle that was in the left hand lane.

Does this mean I was driving without consideration?

People in this province use the right hand "travel-lane" to pass all the time.
I don't understand why passing on the right is so dangerous when compared to passing on the left?

My question is this: Is passing another vehicle operator on his/her right an offense that constitutes driving without reasonable consideration of other road users, (i.e. carelessly), and if so why?

Any help or opinions would be much appreciated.
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Old 11-04-2009, 03:21 PM   #2
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Give us more info, as I'm sure you're leaving some out.

How did you pull into the right lane?
Why did you suddenly accelerate to pass?
Why were you not in the right lane prior to passing?
Why were you not already speeding?

Sounds like you were weaving in/out of traffic, and as such deserve the careless driving charge. Please provide more info.
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Old 11-04-2009, 03:39 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taylor192 View Post
Give us more info, as I'm sure you're leaving some out.

How did you pull into the right lane?
Why did you suddenly accelerate to pass?
Why were you not in the right lane prior to passing?
Why were you not already speeding?

Sounds like you were weaving in/out of traffic, and as such deserve the careless driving charge. Please provide more info.
Full Story:

I was very late for work and worried about losing my job. Incident occurred on the Pat Bay highway around Sidney BC.

Officer says he used a Laser Gun to ascertain that I was speeding and then gave chase. According to him he pulled up behind me at the next red light on the highway with his lights on, ( I didn't see him or hear a siren so I don't know if this is accurate). I was the second car back at the light in the left hand lane. There was traffic beside me if I recall correctly. When the light turned green the single car ahead of me and I accelerated and left the traffic in the slow lane behind. The single car ahead of me did not move into the slow lane once we were clear of other traffic. Trying desperately to get to work on time I indicated and pulled smoothly into the slow lane and overtook the single car that was just ahead of me. Both I and the car ahead of me were speeding at the time I passed so there was no sudden acceleration. I was already well on my way to a hefty speeding fine.
According to the officer he then chased me to the point where I was supposed to turn of the highway about a km and a half down the road when I finally noticed I was being pursued.
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Old 11-04-2009, 07:37 PM   #4
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It will all come down to what exactly is presented in evidence. You have already said excessive speed and lane changing and the fact you didn't notice the PC behind you and you took 1 1/2 kms to finally stop. How that is described, along with traffic volumes, road consitions, time of day, how you changed lanes etc will all count.
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Old 11-04-2009, 08:45 PM   #5
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There is a separate section of the mva for passing on the right. If the officer has already given me one charge for the excessive speeding wouldn't that mitigate the speeding portion of "driving without consideration"; meaning that the officer should have given me excessive speeding and passing on the right instead of excessive speeding and driving without consideration?

What I'm trying to say is if I'm already being penalized for the speeding portion of my driving, can the officer use the fact that I was speeding as evidence for the careless driving as well in effect punishing me twice for the same offense???
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Old 11-04-2009, 08:58 PM   #6
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When you say two-lane road you're talking about two lanes, 1 each direction, or 2 lanes each direction?

I'm assuming in your subsequent posts about "being in the left hand lane" that this was in fact a 4-lane road (2 each direction). In that case I don't understand how passing on the right would be illegal. It's only illegal if you do it on a two-lane road (1 lane each direction). If there's a separate lane you can use that to pass.
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Old 11-04-2009, 10:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unspankable View Post
There is a separate section of the mva for passing on the right. If the officer has already given me one charge for the excessive speeding wouldn't that mitigate the speeding portion of "driving without consideration"; meaning that the officer should have given me excessive speeding and passing on the right instead of excessive speeding and driving without consideration?

What I'm trying to say is if I'm already being penalized for the speeding portion of my driving, can the officer use the fact that I was speeding as evidence for the careless driving as well in effect punishing me twice for the same offense???
Why not?

If you raped and murdered someone, should they just charge you with murder and say that you're already getting penalized for murder so lets just drop the rape charge.
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Old 11-04-2009, 10:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
The officer specifically mentioned that I was receiving the 2nd, (careless driving), charge for moving into the right hand lane and passing the vehicle that was in the left hand lane.
It is legal to pass on the right when there is a right hand lane.

Passing a vehicle on the right does not equate to driving without consideration or driving without due care, unless you are doing so in an uncontrolled or unsafe manner. If you were speeding excessively while passing the car, it may be a valid ticket. If you sped up to excessive speeding AFTER you had passed the car, you could argue that the pass was safe and legal and therefore the 2nd charge should be thrown out.

I suggest you plead guilty to the excessive speeding (if you were in fact 40+kph over) and dispute the other ticket.
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Old 11-04-2009, 10:39 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich Sandor View Post
It is legal to pass on the right when there is a right hand lane.

Passing a vehicle on the right does not equate to driving without consideration or driving without due care, unless you are doing so in an uncontrolled or unsafe manner. If you were speeding excessively while passing the car, it may be a valid ticket. If you sped up to excessive speeding AFTER you had passed the car, you could argue that the pass was safe and legal and therefore the 2nd charge should be thrown out.

I suggest you plead guilty to the excessive speeding (if you were in fact 40+kph over) and dispute the other ticket.
Quote:
Originally Posted by unspankable View Post
Full Story:

I was very late for work and worried about losing my job. Incident occurred on the Pat Bay highway around Sidney BC.

Officer says he used a Laser Gun to ascertain that I was speeding and then gave chase. According to him he pulled up behind me at the next red light on the highway with his lights on, ( I didn't see him or hear a siren so I don't know if this is accurate). I was the second car back at the light in the left hand lane. There was traffic beside me if I recall correctly. When the light turned green the single car ahead of me and I accelerated and left the traffic in the slow lane behind. The single car ahead of me did not move into the slow lane once we were clear of other traffic. Trying desperately to get to work on time I indicated and pulled smoothly into the slow lane and overtook the single car that was just ahead of me. Both I and the car ahead of me were speeding at the time I passed so there was no sudden acceleration. I was already well on my way to a hefty speeding fine.
According to the officer he then chased me to the point where I was supposed to turn of the highway about a km and a half down the road when I finally noticed I was being pursued.
So me thinks he was already at the excessive speed.
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Old 11-04-2009, 11:44 PM   #10
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So, did you get to work on time? Anyways, if you feel that you were not dangerous in doing your passing, then dispute that part, but plead guilty to the excessive speeding.
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Old 11-05-2009, 09:39 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CRS View Post
Why not?

If you raped and murdered someone, should they just charge you with murder and say that you're already getting penalized for murder so lets just drop the rape charge.
Those are two separate offenses by themselves. You could get charged for either. To murder someone you don't have to rape them. What I was saying Is that If the officer gave me the driving without consideration charge as a result of speeding and passing on the right, I've already been charged with excessive speeding so it shouldn't be a contributing factor in the careless driving.
The rape and murder thing isn't the same I think.
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Old 11-05-2009, 09:45 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich Sandor View Post
It is legal to pass on the right when there is a right hand lane.

Passing a vehicle on the right does not equate to driving without consideration or driving without due care, unless you are doing so in an uncontrolled or unsafe manner. If you were speeding excessively while passing the car, it may be a valid ticket. If you sped up to excessive speeding AFTER you had passed the car, you could argue that the pass was safe and legal and therefore the 2nd charge should be thrown out.

I suggest you plead guilty to the excessive speeding (if you were in fact 40+kph over) and dispute the other ticket.
Oh I was definitely speeding excessively. I would never dispute that ticket.
When I passed the other car we were both doing about 110 on a 90 km/h road.

Would it be better for me to ask the officer to change the charge to an Unsafe pass on the right, (which is only 2 points instead of 6)?
Also for a tailgating/following too closely charge, does the officer have to have a clear view of the distance between the two cars involved if there is no accident to defend the charge in court?

Thank you for all your replies and help so far.

Last edited by unspankable; 11-05-2009 at 09:49 AM. Reason: added content
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Old 11-05-2009, 11:02 AM   #13
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30 kmh over the posted limit is not "excessive' speeed...that charges requires you to be going at least 41 kmh over the limit. Your indicated speed would be a level 2 speeding ticket 21-40 over the limit. As far as tailgating goes...at 110 kmh ( if it was that actual speed) you would take a minimum of 50 metres for reaction time and beginning to apply the brakes, if someone you were following at any time decided to brake. Driving closer than that would fall into the drive w/o consideration...as there is no way you could actually stop in time. I think the Cop would be able to articulate that you were closer than 50m behind..and he doesn't have to be right on your bumper with a measuring tape to say that. You don't have to crash to prove your driving was w/o consideration...just that it held the potential, given all the facts.

As far as changing the charge section completely, the Cop would likely have to issue you a new VT for that charge & that would need a new court date.
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Old 11-05-2009, 11:25 AM   #14
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30 kmh over the posted limit is not "excessive' speeed...that charges requires you to be going at least 41 kmh over the limit. Your indicated speed would be a level 2 speeding ticket 21-40 over the limit. As far as tailgating goes...at 110 kmh ( if it was that actual speed) you would take a minimum of 50 metres for reaction time and beginning to apply the brakes, if someone you were following at any time decided to brake. Driving closer than that would fall into the drive w/o consideration...as there is no way you could actually stop in time. I think the Cop would be able to articulate that you were closer than 50m behind..and he doesn't have to be right on your bumper with a measuring tape to say that. You don't have to crash to prove your driving was w/o consideration...just that it held the potential, given all the facts.

As far as changing the charge section completely, the Cop would likely have to issue you a new VT for that charge & that would need a new court date.
You make very valid points. Thank you for your analysis.

I was doing 110 at the time of the pass and subsequently increased speed past 40 kph over the limit.

I did not know a new violation ticket would have to be issued for a lesser charge. For this to take place I would have to meet the officer beforehand correct? In your opinion is this an unlikely outcome?
If you were the officer would it be unlikely that you would accept a guilty plea for following too closely instead of going to trial for the driving without consideration charge?

In your opinion what is my best course of action. Am I SOL basically?

Last edited by unspankable; 11-05-2009 at 11:26 AM. Reason: added content
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Old 11-05-2009, 12:05 PM   #15
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If I was an officer and you pulled all this while I was behind you, I would give you the careless driving charge since you obviously didn't check your mirrors during all of this.
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Old 11-09-2009, 02:19 AM   #16
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I know it's a dumb question but I'm a little bit confused. Does this "passing on the right" mean to go faster than the car to your left (but staying in your own lane), or cutting them off from their right to go ahead of them in their lane?
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Old 11-09-2009, 01:18 PM   #17
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Passing on the right means exactly that... you're in the right lane, you passed someone who is driving in the left lane (on their right side). Nothing to do with cutting them off.
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Old 11-09-2009, 04:32 PM   #18
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Passing on right
158 (1) The driver of a vehicle must not cause or permit the vehicle to overtake and pass on the right of another vehicle, except

(a) when the vehicle overtaken is making a left turn or its driver has signalled his or her intention to make a left turn,
(b) when on a laned roadway there is one or more than one unobstructed lane on the side of the roadway on which the driver is permitted to drive, or
(c) on a one way street or a highway on which traffic is restricted to one direction of movement, where the roadway is free from obstructions and is of sufficient width for 2 or more lanes of moving vehicles.
(2) Despite subsection (1), a driver of a vehicle must not cause the vehicle to overtake and pass another vehicle on the right
(a) when the movement cannot be made safely, or
(b) by driving the vehicle off the roadway.

Found here
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Old 11-10-2009, 09:21 PM   #19
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I think the confusion lies in the definition of passing in motor vehicle terms vs in every day life.
I mean in everyday life if you're minding your own business in your own lane and just happen to be driving past other cars (because you're faster) then you would be passing.

For driving, it seems that passing seems to refer to lane changing as well. ie. Slow car ahead, you switch lanes to overtake, then switch back.

Of course maybe both definitions are one and the same. But I really wouldn't consider myself "passing" in the motor vehicle sense, if I'm cruising in my own lane minding my own business and other cars in other lanes just happen to be slower.
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Old 11-11-2009, 10:56 PM   #20
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If I was an officer and you pulled all this while I was behind you, I would give you the careless driving charge since you obviously didn't check your mirrors during all of this.
Yes I know that but when you're travelling at a high rate of speed the safest place to be looking is as far ahead as possible as much of the time as possible. By the time I was stopped I was at 170km/h. Looking anywhere else but straight ahead would be more stupid then I was already being.
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Old 11-11-2009, 11:01 PM   #21
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Does anyone know how to negotiate the Consideration ticket to say following to closely or unsafe pass on the right?

This would be extremely helpful.
Thanks
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Old 11-11-2009, 11:19 PM   #22
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Get disclosure from the issuing officer and make sure you understand what evidence will be presented against you. Then show up to court early and negotiate with the officer prior to trial. There isn't much except for your own negotiating skills that will get you anything.
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Old 11-12-2009, 07:16 AM   #23
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I could see how driving 170 in a 90 k zone and passing other vehicles on the right would get you 2 VTs. They could even consider criminal Code dangerous driving instead. You have to ask yourself if you want a JP to hear the circumstances involved? The fines can go up to $2000 each if the circumstancs fit. Based on the situation a spresented her, I think you got a real break, as you could have easily been issued a "due care" VT for $345 instead of the $196 "consideration".
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Old 11-12-2009, 11:44 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unspankable View Post
Yes I know that but when you're travelling at a high rate of speed the safest place to be looking is as far ahead as possible as much of the time as possible. By the time I was stopped I was at 170km/h. Looking anywhere else but straight ahead would be more stupid then I was already being.
You definitely deserve the careless charge now.

What you just described is "tunnel vision" and is the worst thing you can do when at speed. You need to be even more aware of your surroundings, not less.
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Old 11-12-2009, 10:45 PM   #25
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You definitely deserve the careless charge now.

What you just described is "tunnel vision" and is the worst thing you can do when at speed. You need to be even more aware of your surroundings, not less.
I'm sorry I disagree, but thank you for your opinion nonetheless. I was aware of my surroundings just further ahead of the average driver at 80km/hr. As for looking behind me I'm doing 170... anyone else going fast enough to either keep up with or pass me better be keeping their eyes straight front as well. They are not my concern. Obstacles much further ahead are.

Last edited by unspankable; 11-12-2009 at 10:51 PM. Reason: added content
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