Today’s near miss sees a cyclist suffer a close pass by a bus driver, who then cut in on him. The driver’s explanation when challenged about this was that there was a cycle path – a line of reasoning which apparently made sense to him in some mysterious way.
The incident took place on Garstang Road in Broughton heading towards Preston on Sunday August 4. Phil says that the road used to be the main A6, but that it has been superseded by a bypass.
“As I passed the entrance to the Marriot hotel, a double decker bus passed me – the super wide angle of the GoPro doesn’t do justice to how close he was.
“As he began to close pass me, he angled the bus and pulled back in sharply so that the front wheels were approximately 12 inches from the kerb. My handlebars were too close to the bus for comfort. As he passed, he braked sharply.
“My bit of road was rapidly disappearing in front of me, I slammed on, locked the back wheel up and managed to avoid being crushed between the bus and the kerb.
“I caught him up at the next set of lights and asked him why he had close passed me in such a way. He opened the bus door and said: ‘No, no, there’s a cycle path, use the cycle path.’
“He then shut the doors. I shouted to him that I did not have to use the cycle path and I was legally entitled to use the road but he kept saying to use the cycle path.”
This is entirely correct and even if it weren’t, where someone should be has no bearing on where they actually are.
There’s also the matter of the cycle path itself.
“It seems to have been created by a non-cyclist,” says Phil. “The new tarmac is really rough, there are bits of loose tarmac and stones strewn across it, and they have thoughtfully placed narrow but really silly speed bumps along it. They are similar to kerbstones sunk into the road, but stuck out enough that you really hit them, rather than ride over them.
“I have ridden on it, but prefer to ride on the road, as, due to the bypass, it’s almost deserted.”
Phil contacted Stagecoach about the incident, “who didn’t appear too bothered.”
He also reported it to the police and went down to the police station to show them the footage.
“The officer agreed with me that the driver’s actions were deliberate, and said she would show the footage to her sergeant.
“A day later she emailed me to inform me that the sergeant had viewed the footage and decided that, although he close passed me, he was of the opinion that the driver was braking for the speed hump. No mention was made of the action of pulling in sharply.
“The result? No further action. I received a helpful letter from Stagecoach one week later which informed me that the driver had been ’spoken to’.
“What is the point in investing in expensive cameras and providing the footage if Lancashire police are not interested? This is not the first time I have submitted footage which they didn’t act on.”
Over the years road.cc has reported on literally hundreds of close passes and near misses involving badly driven vehicles from every corner of the country – so many, in fact, that we’ve decided to turn the phenomenon into a regular feature on the site. One day hopefully we will run out of close passes and near misses to report on, but until that happy day arrives, Near Miss of the Day will keep rolling on.
If you’ve caught on camera a close encounter of the uncomfortable kind with another road user that you’d like to share with the wider cycling community please send it to us at info [at] road.cc or send us a message via the road.cc Facebook page.
If the video is on YouTube, please send us a link, if not we can add any footage you supply to our YouTube channel as an unlisted video (so it won't show up on searches).
Please also let us know whether you contacted the police and if so what their reaction was, as well as the reaction of the vehicle operator if it was a bus, lorry or van with company markings etc.