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Near Miss of the Day 471: Builder's truck driver in illegal right turn across cyclist's path (includes swearing)

Our regular series featuring close passes from around the country - today it's Bristol...

The latest video in our Near Miss of the Day series shows the driver of a builder’s lorry ignoring emergency infrastructure introduced due to the coronavirus pandemic – and almost hitting a cyclist in the process.

It was filmed by reader David, who said he was “using the new COVID infrastructure in Bristol, where the northern end of Baldwin Street has been closed to everything apart from buses, taxis, motorcycles and bikes.

“I was cycling along St Augustine’s Parade opposite the Hippodrome, I had the lane to myself and was preparing to turn right onto Baldwin Street.

“The driver of a builder’s van decided at the last minute that he was going to join me without indicating and almost took me out.

“Some swearing was invoked and the driver realised that he was making an illegal turn.”

David added: “I have submitted the video to Avon & Somerset Police but I’ve yet to hear back from them.

> Near Miss of the Day turns 100 - Why do we do the feature and what have we learnt from it?

Over the years 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] or send us a message via the 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.

> What to do if you capture a near miss or close pass (or worse) on camera while cycling

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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Darkhairedlord | 3 years ago

Expect a ticket for rlj near the end.

Hirsute replied to Darkhairedlord | 3 years ago

You need to be a bit more specific than that.

quiff replied to Darkhairedlord | 3 years ago

This might be a weary comment about how police treat cyclists who submit videos of poor driving, in which case, fair enough. But if you're accusing him of RLJing, the cyclist moved off when the light was still green. The light changed when he was in the middle of a box junction.    

AlsoSomniloquism replied to quiff | 3 years ago

I assume he is talking about the very last set of lights which might be a ped crossing where it is tight on if his wheel is over the line or not when it hits red. 

ktache | 3 years ago

Fine reactions Dave.

The van doesn't appear to have one of those Blind Spot Warning notices on the drivers side either...

Hirsute replied to ktache | 3 years ago

I was wondering why you had bumped this old nmotd but then I worked out it should be 471 !

(maybe I could be a sub ed)

I worked out it should be 471 !

ktache replied to Hirsute | 3 years ago

I hadn't even noticed the numbers,

Just so many....

davwil | 3 years ago

I've just had the lamentable standard response from Avon & Somerset Police

Mr Wilcox

Thank you for taking the time to upload your footage which has now been processed (a warning letter or a fixed penalty or a prosecution has been issued). Thank you for helping to keep our roads safe. 

I can confirm that as you are a witness to this offence, you will not receive any further updates.

wtjs replied to davwil | 3 years ago

a warning letter or a fixed penalty or a prosecution has been issued

This probably means they have done nothing at all. It's obviously not a prosecution because a They hardly ever prosecute for offences against a cyclist unless their favourite criterion of a lot of blood on the road is met, and b they would have to get a statement from you for that. I wasn't able to elicit from Lancashire Constabulary a confirmation that a driver who receives some 'warning letter' woud have this fact recorded under his name/ on his record so that if he committed another offence in the future, it would be taken more seriously. Therefore, I conclude that they can receive a sequence of such letters with no detrimental effect at all. When they say they have 'had a word with the driver' it means the offence is being treated as a joke.

hawkinspeter replied to wtjs | 3 years ago

My experiences with Avon & Somerset police have been quite good with close-passes etc. Before they brought in the "not a witness" blurb into their replies, I got a variety of warning letters and NIPs for close-passes depending on the severity. I had a good chat with one of the officers when I collided with a van (it was posted under a NMOTD but can't remember which one) and he seemed honestly concerned with making the roads safer for cyclists. When you submit video through their portal, you are essentially submitting a statement, so unless it goes to court then they wouldn't need to contact you.

I'm thinking that the next time I submit video and get the "not a witness" response, I might raise it as a complaint with them because it's much better to know what they are doing.

wtjs replied to hawkinspeter | 3 years ago

This 'you are just a witness' tripe which the police has collectively recently dreamed up is one of the lamentable features of this police idleness. I admit that Lancashire has not used it on me yet! Mostly, they just ignore reports and refuse to provide incident numbers as their dodges of choice. NMotD 370 is one of the worst I have seen or experienced, and the cyclist would certainly have been killed in a collision because of the relative speed involved. I was terrified just watching it. Describing that cyclist as a 'witness' is disgracful and shows that A&S police haven't been on anything like enough empathy training.

AlsoSomniloquism replied to wtjs | 3 years ago

I don't think it was something to target cyclists, but one where the majority of submissions are literally that, a witness report where the person submitting it wasn't in any danger and no damage occurred to them. 

The trouble is the systems used are all based on process and repetition to speed them up so where the cyclist above felt life threatened ( and we have all been in very similar situations), the person reviewing it sees it as poor driving but the cyclist wasn't hurt and is reporting it so a witness. Although as a WM Police area person, I feel like the prisoner in Life of Brian at the moment. "email to say your are a witness, what I wouldn't give to get an email to say I was a witness, you lucky lucky bastard."

They might start being more respecting of it if we phoned 999 whenever a bad pass like this occurred and stated we were threatened with a deadly weapon but I'm not so sure. For example I was potentially threatened by a van driver who might have been holding a knife a few months ago for the cheek of looking at him as he sped past whilst I was standing in my front garden. His words as he come out the van was "the way I'm feeling, someone is going to get it tonight and it might as well be you" before reaching in to get the 'knife' (or maybe phone). He then saw my brother was also standing there, stated i was lucky there were cameras around and effing and still threatening, went back into his van and sped off. My 999 call ended with them telling me a Policeman will call back the next morning (it was 7pm when I called) to take a full statement. 


wtjs replied to AlsoSomniloquism | 3 years ago

 person reviewing it sees it as poor driving but the cyclist wasn't hurt and is reporting it so a witness

Exactly! What the police want to see is a lot of blood on the road before they will take offences against cyclists seriously. When I was hit on 2 separate occasions by a door mirror, the police simply wrote it off- in the first case it was described as merely 'a momentary loss of concentration' by the driver (an omni-excuse which would pretty much get any driver off any offence) when I was inches away (as a stationary cyclist with the offending driver coming down the wrong side of the road) from being completely smashed up by a driver who then deployed the main omni-excuse: I didn't see him. I had to go into months of complaint writing against the determined passive resistance of police bureaucracy to get anything at all done, and that was just the joke driving course. The police simply failed to reply to the other fully documented case- I wouldn't let them get away with that now! Are we all prepared to become blood on the road before our complaints warrant effective action? Make the b******s suffer increased workloads through your persistence, by refusing to be fobbed off!

Velo-drone replied to wtjs | 3 years ago
wtjs wrote:

they would have to get a statement from you for that

This is not true - they can (& do) use the description of events you give in your incident report as your statement.

This is why you should always include detailed information about what you were thinking and doing, and how you felt (I.e. fear ) and any after effects- as it could end up being all a magistrate or jury has to go on to determine the seriousness of what happened.

brooksby | 3 years ago
1 like

Doesn't surprise me at all.  Given that it is supposed to be closed to private motor vehicles, there are a large number of privately owned motor vehicles which appear to still use it.

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