The overtaking of trucks on the highway

Driving quietly on the highway at 130km / h, you are brutally blocked by a truck that doubles at 90km / h ... annoying, is not it? But is it forbidden?

Abandoned Highway Pripyat Chernobyl (CC Zoriah)

Abandoned Highway Pripyat Chernobyl (CC Zoriah)

To my knowledge, these trucks can be sanctioned in two very special cases only ... the rest of overtaking are certainly embarrassing, but not prohibited.

Chapter 1. Paths of at least 3 ways

Section 1.1. The principle

If you are on a lane of at least three lanes (ie 2 × 3 lanes or more), there is a special rule regarding lane use by lorries.

In fact, for heavy vehicles over 3.5t or over 7m in length, they are forbidden to use other routes. than the two most right lanes (R412-25 of the Highway Code):

Where a road has three or more lanes, assigned to the same direction of traffic, it shall be prohibited for drivers of vehicles with a total permissible gross weight exceeding 3.5 tonnes or combinations of vehicles exceeding 7 meters in length. use routes other than the two lanes closest to the right-hand side of the roadway, except, with the least possible hindrance to the normal operation of the other vehicles, to prepare a change of direction.

To put it simply, heavy goods vehicles can use the routes indicated in this diagram:

Highway (cc Clicsouris)

Highway (cc Clicsouris)

Section 1.2. Punishment

Failure to comply with this rule may result in a fine

Chapter 2. The really heavy weights ...

Section 2.1. Principle

When overtaking, heavy vehicles must be careful not to slow down other vehicles too much (in reality, this is also true for all vehicles).

Thus, when a vehicle uses the left-most lane, it must not be below 80 km / h (R413-19 of the Highway Traffic Act).

As a reminder, there is no minimum speed on the motorway, but your speed should not, in any case, "interfere with the normal operation of other vehicles while driving for no good reason at an abnormally reduced speed” (R413-19 of the Highway Traffic Act).

Highway (cc Clicsouris)

Highway (cc Clicsouris)

Section 2.2. Sanction

Driving under the 80km / h threshold on the leftmost lane is punished by a 2nd category fine of 150 € (R413-19 of the Highway Traffic Act together R131-13 penal code).


  1. hello, I just made 1450 km on the highway and I find that there is very little, yes I say very, very few accidents on French highways when we see the heavy traffic and especially the risks that heavyweights take !!!!!! It is absolutely scandalous to repress so much in order to penalize motorists and to do nothing to supervise the driving of these truckers… .. of course, not all but especially all these huge trucks which take the aspiration of the previous one in order to start to double, who put their turn signal and who deport to pass in front of …… it is a scandal and all these truckers are foreigners for the most part …… and what are the public authorities doing to put a stop to these abuses ?? nothing… .. WE PENALIZE CARS THAT RUN AT 140 BUT THAT ARE 2 STUDY AND CAPABLE OF RUNNING AT 180/200 BUT WE SAY NOTHING TO ALL THESE TRUCKS THAT RIDE AT 100/110 BUT THAT ARE AT THEIR POWER LIMITS ???? ????

  2. Hello

    What about 2-lane highways (Toulouse Narbonne for example….) Where we regularly see signs along the route “trucks forbidden to overtake” but where we frequently miss getting into a lorry to dislodge to overtake another truck ( express passage from 130 km / h to 80 max ... grrr! I hate !!!)
    My question: do they really have the right to double then? to what is the warning signs "trucks forbidden to double" otherwise? (or how many km are these signs valid? ??? !!!)

  3. Do trucks have the right to dock without worrying about vehicles?

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