"Move over", but where? While the Near Miss of the Day series has seen an abundance of motorists feeling entitled to all of the road — even if there's barely enough space to overtake if it were a cyclist drawn on a sheet of paper and floating in the wind — the passenger of this latest instalment felt the need to spell it out for the cyclist.
Sally, a mother of two from Kent who works in PR for a charity, was riding between Sittingbourne and Maidstone — her 15 mile one-way regular commute on Thursday morning, when the van driver barged their way through, beeping and honking aggressively on Swanton Street.
Two fully grown men of J Rudd Development driving dangerously and showing aggression towards a lone woman riding her bike to work.
The dickhead of the day prize goes to....
J Rudd arseholes and Co.
07394 202121 pic.twitter.com/9tZ1LfNcm3
— Sally (@Sporty_sal) September 1, 2023
She told road.cc: "I was riding a little out to avoid broken road but was still not in the primary position. I heard the van revving and beeping. As they passed passenger shouts aggressively to move over.
"I'm a confident rider and woman and this behaviour I'm used to and whilst I don't accept it - it happens and I refuse to be bullied. But this kind of aggression is a barrier to so many women wanting to ride and these drivers need sticking on by the police."
"To be fair after he shouted at me I did tell him to go f*** himself so I'm not perfect but I did nothing to make them behave like that in the first place though simply I was in their way.
"I regularly share posts and advocate for road safety. I'm concerned about Kent Police's lack of interest in cycling safety, they do not watch the footage of incidents reported. The last 4 close passes reported did not yield any kind of response from the force. I've complained to the crime commissioner who did not reply to my most recent email."
When asked about the police force's response, Sally was scathing in her critique, saying: "In short unless I'm killed or injured, they don't care."
Kent Police's response to her reporting of the incident, as shared by Sally with road.cc reads:
As you are aware, Kent Police receive a significant number of allegations of bad driving both via our website and through calls made to our control room every day. Currently members of the public are not able to submit video footage at the time of the initial report, but instead they submit written reports, which are subject to an initial triage review by a dedicated team. Upon triaging the report the reviewing officer will request the reporter provides a copy of the footage only on occasions where they are satisfied that it is proportionate to do so, this decision is based on the description of the evidence available in the initial report, as well as the nature and severity of the potential offence.
The police then mention its Digital Asset Management (DAMS) portal for reporting footage, but Sally said that she has never once been invited to to submit her footage.
Sally, who has worked as a press officer for the Kent Police for 21 years, said that this was standard and that "road safety is not a priority, nor will it ever be".
She added: "I've written to the crime commissioner and complained several times but they ignore me. They just file it at source at you don't hear from them."
"They can't stop people stabbing and robbing each other, their pitifully underfunded and they don't have the resources to care. Not their fault it's our government."
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 Twitter or 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.
Adwitiya joined road.cc in 2023 as a news writer after graduating with a masters in journalism from Cardiff University. His dissertation focused on active travel, which soon threw him into the deep end of covering everything related to the two-wheeled tool, and now cycling is as big a part of his life as guitars and football. He has previously covered local and national politics for Voice Wales, and also likes to writes about science, tech and the environment, if he can find the time. Living right next to the Taff trail in the Welsh capital, you can find him trying to tackle the brutal climbs in the valleys.