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Near Miss of the Day 705: Tailgating close pass driver highlights need for Highway Code change

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

The latest video in our Near Miss of the Day series shows a Range Rover driver tailgating a cyclist along a road that lacks safe options for overtaking yet still making a close pass, underlining why one of the changes made to the Highway Code with effect from tomorrow advises cyclists to The rule also states that you should ride in the primary position in situations where it would be unsafe for a driver to overtake them, which is clearly the case here.

The footage was shot on Keelings Road in Hanwell, Stoke-on-Trent, by reader Rob who said: “This was from 2019 but had a profound effect on me mentally for a long time and still makes me angry today.

“I bought the camera after increasing amounts of incidents with reckless drivers.

“After first having the video dismissed by the police it was then picked up again and they decided it was worth pursuing.

“After a little nudge to find out what happened, the driver was cautioned.

“I would rather have had him prosecuted as it was really dangerous – notice the pull in towards me as he went past.”

Rob also added the email he received from the police to tell him about the action that head been taken:

Apologies for the delay I had not forgotten you. I had issues initially as the vehicle had several registered and insured drivers and I had to identify the driver at the time of the incident. The case has been finalised and a warning has been given. I would like to thank you for your assistance in this matter and the supply of the footage which assisted.

Other than the tailgating and close pass itself, there are a couple of points worth noting here.

The width of the street – and that of the Range Rover itself – plus two-way traffic means there was simply nowhere the driver was able to overtake Rob safely, and rather than sitting on his rear wheel, the safer option would have been to hang back until the road widened.

It’s clear the motorist decided instead to go for it as soon as there was the slightest gap, and while the pull back in towards the cyclist may well have been designed to intimidate, it also seems partly in response to the fact there is another vehicle approaching from the opposite direction.

It’s also noticeable how much pavement parking there is on this street on both sides of the road, which would force pedestrians into the carriageway to get past those vehicles.

> 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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