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Our regular feature highlighting close passes caught on camera from around the country – today it’s London's Old Kent Road...

WARNING - Today's video includes a LOT of extreme swearing

Today's video in our regular Near Miss of the Day feature highlights something many of us will have experienced - an impatient driver who, frustrated at not being able to pass a cyclist, uses their vehicle to intimidate the rider, with this episode also escalating into threats against him from the driver and his passenger.

The footage was shot on Monday evening on London's Old Kent Road by road.cc reader Mark Hood, who said he was left shaken by the encounter, which happened as he rode alongside a lorry.

In the description on YouTube, he said the driver beeped at him before tailgaiting just inches from his back wheel, before driving alongside with the bonnet of his Honda car "literally 2 inches from my pedals."

Mark continued: "I’m screaming at him that he will hit me but he continues. I literally have nowhere to go, even if I move to the gutter there is not space to pass me because there is a large lorry to his right.

"Finally I reach a red light and slow down, he squeezes alongside me. Him and his passenger proceed to threaten me, saying they will rip my camera off and kill me. All because they could not pass me and beat me to the red light? I am understandably shaken and angry. I make no apologies for my bad language. When the lights turn green I tell them to proceed but they want me to ride in front of them! No thank you.

"Sadly it is dark so their faces are not captured on camera. Unfortunately I do not have a rear camera and my front facing one does not fully show how close their bumper was to knocking me off.

"It’s the closest I’ve ever come to a serious collision at speed. If they had hit me I’m sure I would have fallen off in front of them and been run over.

"My speed was 20mph which is a reasonable speed and there was no need to be impatient and try to force their way past unsafely.

"I was shaking for a good half an hour after this incident. Now I’m angry that I do not have their faces captured on camera and the distance between their car and my bike isn’t captured fully on camera."

Mark added that he was "disappointed that the cyclist behind me went on past without a word. He would have witnessed the appalling tailgating and verbal assault, if I was in his position I would have at least stopped to witness in case it escalated. I feel let down because he offered no support."

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.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.

28 comments

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SteveAustin [92 posts] 6 months ago
9 likes

2:10 if you get bored of watching a bloke riding slowly in primary....

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kevvjj [329 posts] 6 months ago
3 likes
SteveAustin wrote:

2:10 if you get bored of watching a bloke riding slowly in primary....

 

and it's all over by 3:20

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Dr_Lex [466 posts] 6 months ago
1 like
SteveAustin wrote:

2:10 if you get bored of watching a bloke riding slowly in primary....

and stop after the sweary bit, as there's no further interest.

I'm sure it wasn't a nice experience for the poster, but seems pretty normal for that there London. Wave 'em back and don't bother arguing.

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jhsmith87 [43 posts] 6 months ago
2 likes

That escalated...

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alansmurphy [1663 posts] 6 months ago
3 likes

The state of the nations roads, the moped was worse and a nobhead RLJ that kept making you pass them didn't help the situation...

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KINGHORN [24 posts] 6 months ago
5 likes

More than just the primary issue here. What about the dick on the motobike and the scooter that followed, as well as the 2nd scooter that didn't indicate to change lanes and used the bus lane.

 

Maybe the cycist didn't help, because you caught him running a red light!

 

you have their number plate, don't need the faces!

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Yorkshire wallet [1701 posts] 6 months ago
2 likes

I'd  be more bothered by motorcyclists looking at that.

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ibr17xvii [271 posts] 6 months ago
3 likes
Dr_Lex wrote:
SteveAustin wrote:

2:10 if you get bored of watching a bloke riding slowly in primary....

and stop after the sweary bit, as there's no further interest.

I'm sure it wasn't a nice experience for the poster, but seems pretty normal for that there London. Wave 'em back and don't bother arguing.

Maybe so but doesn't make it right.

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Pub bike [258 posts] 6 months ago
1 like

Get a Fly6.

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gw42 [26 posts] 6 months ago
1 like

yeah, I picked up a Fly6 for about £80, but I think I was lucky to get one that cheap. Definitely a good piece of kit and decent images (not full HD, but good quality 720p). 

Personally though, I think the footage there is shows how ridiculously close the car is, and even though it's not the perfect angle, it should be enough to show how dangerous it was and take action. Whether the Met would do anything is another matter

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TurboJoe [77 posts] 6 months ago
3 likes

I'd recommend using the Q1 route in future. Runs roughly parallel to OKR and barely a car in sight.

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srchar [736 posts] 6 months ago
2 likes

Pretty standard stuff for the shitter bits of London. Doesn't make it any less depressing, mind.

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Leviathan [2937 posts] 6 months ago
3 likes

Okay, forget all the stupid muffled effs on both sides... What about the slow cyclist daudling through the red lights at 1:30? This is exactly the kind of shit that causes problems. A lot of people on road.cc decry 'collective responsibility' and I agree, I am not responsible for others actions. But bad cycling and RLJ allow berks in hot hatches the benefit of the doubt to be dicks to any other cyclist getting in their way.

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drosco [428 posts] 6 months ago
3 likes

Is anyone else tired of this feature? 27 videos of stuff that most regular riders have all experienced at one point or another. It's just preaching to the converted.

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alansmurphy [1663 posts] 6 months ago
1 like

Levi, and again doesn't make it right or collective but if drivers perceive camera rider is too wide they attribute it to passing "that bastard red light jumper"...

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davel [2123 posts] 6 months ago
1 like
Leviathan wrote:

Okay, forget all the stupid muffled effs on both sides... What about the slow cyclist daudling through the red lights at 1:30? This is exactly the kind of shit that causes problems. A lot of people on road.cc decry 'collective responsibility' and I agree, I am not responsible for others actions. But bad cycling and RLJ allow berks in hot hatches the benefit of the doubt to be dicks to any other cyclist getting in their way.

The kind of berks who think like that will hate cyclists for plenty of reasons other than some doing RLJs. They're fed them on a daily basis.

If you want to rail against anything, target the opinion formers, the dodgy MPs, the lazy journalists and the moton lobby groups who perpetuate cyclists constituting an outgroup and apologist arguments for squashing a few every now and then.

@drosco: yes, it's boring, but I'd rather have noise like this to counter the sheer volume of anti-cycling nonsense that has infected the mainstream media, rather than nothing. Just look at the recent 'jogger pushes ped into the road' story, which turned into an excuse for rentagobs to have a pop at cyclists. It's a propaganda war.

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don simon [1769 posts] 6 months ago
1 like
Quote:

The kind of berks who think like that will hate cyclists for plenty of reasons other than some doing RLJs. They're fed them on a daily basis.

People will always be irrational in their hatred, some even believe that they are intelligent and support or try to justify their  pathetic views. It wouldn't surprise me if they go looking for or follow a cyclist simply in order to hassle them. They will always find something to hate, I think it's to do with inadequacies in their lives.

And being stupid.

There was even a dude from here who took exception to Audi owners, FFS!

I still haven't worked out whether this is productive or makes us look like whinging ninnies as not all the close passes have been close.

 

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davel [2123 posts] 6 months ago
0 likes
don simon]<p>[quote wrote:

I still haven't worked out whether this is productive or makes us look like whinging ninnies as not all the close passes have been close.

I reckon both - and I'm in two minds myself. There's so much bias and nonsense to counter, though, that I see it as a bit of an own-goal when reasonable cyclists shut our own biased nonsense down for decent reasons. My argument doesn't make much sense, but neither does the Daily Wail.

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don simon [1769 posts] 6 months ago
2 likes
davel][quote=don simon wrote:
Quote:

I still haven't worked out whether this is productive or makes us look like whinging ninnies as not all the close passes have been close.

I reckon both - and I'm in two minds myself. There's so much bias and nonsense to counter, though, that I see it as a bit of an own-goal when reasonable cyclists shut our own biased nonsense down for decent reasons. My argument doesn't make much sense, but neither does the Daily Wail.

For whatever reason, we're not wired to get on. Go to Spain and you'll see people who'll encourage and support you. Mistakes are made there but there is very little malice, people apologise for their mistake and don't blame the vivtim. This country is appalling in its desire to do damage, I used to believe that people don't actually go out to knock over or kill cyclists, now I'm not so sure.

The press plays a very large part in the formation of public thinking and how people think that can treat others.

Yesterday's ride saw me nearly taken out by an unleashed dog. The owner was more concerned about me being out of control because I had used the word "bloody", you can imagine how that ended.  No apology or even recognition that the dog was out of ontrol.

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nbrus [560 posts] 6 months ago
0 likes

This 'news story' isn't about motorists vs cyclists ... its about two pricks in a car. They would still be pricks if they were on bikes.

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alansmurphy [1663 posts] 6 months ago
2 likes

Isn't it about a large piece of metal being controlled by one of said picks being used to intimidate a more vulnerable person on another mode of transport?

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davel [2123 posts] 6 months ago
1 like
nbrus wrote:

This 'news story' isn't about motorists vs cyclists ... its about two pricks in a car. They would still be pricks if they were on bikes.

This fundamentally highlights the difference in attitudes.

You're quite right, of course. The difference is, that when people see people on bikes being pricks, a sizeable proportion of the public does see that as 'cyclist' behaviour - and then a response to that is to rabble-rouse in awful papers, post on social media about cyclists getting what they deserve, and the justice system seeing cyclist deaths as acceptable collateral.

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Chougher [4 posts] 6 months ago
3 likes

I really hate these 'miss of the day' stories, and they do nothing for cycling. In fact, they hold back cycling debate, as they just make people angry - leading to more clicks for road.cc, and that means more dollars in their bank, so I doubt they will go away anytime soon.

Instead, road.cc should concentrate on getting people to respect cycling and cyclists as users of road infrastructure, alongside pedestrians, horse riders, and, I dunno, pogo stick jumpers. But this takes more than 'gosh golly look at this awful white van man', so I absolutely don't expect this to happen. 

 

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jollygoodvelo [1691 posts] 6 months ago
2 likes
Chougher wrote:

I really hate these 'miss of the day' stories, and they do nothing for cycling. In fact, they hold back cycling debate, as they just make people angry - leading to more clicks for road.cc, and that means more dollars in their bank, so I doubt they will go away anytime soon.

Instead, road.cc should concentrate on getting people to respect cycling and cyclists as users of road infrastructure, alongside pedestrians, horse riders, and, I dunno, pogo stick jumpers. But this takes more than 'gosh golly look at this awful white van man', so I absolutely don't expect this to happen. 

 

Completely agree.  It's crazy - people thinking about taking up cycling might come to this site, see these articles and go "wow, I might die.  Think I'll take up table tennis instead."  I'm sure the intention is to highlight that the danger comes from cars and not inherently from the act of cycling, but this doesn't come across in the writing or social media promotion of these articles.

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davel [2123 posts] 6 months ago
3 likes
Chougher wrote:

I really hate these 'miss of the day' stories, and they do nothing for cycling. In fact, they hold back cycling debate, as they just make people angry - leading to more clicks for road.cc, and that means more dollars in their bank, so I doubt they will go away anytime soon.

They might make some people angry. I personally get more angered by MGIFers every now and then risking leaving my kids without a dad just to get to the lights in front of me.

They also generate a fuckton of debate BTL, leading to other articles being shared etc.

Besides, what's wrong with a bit of anger, or righteous indignation? In the face of a society that has accepted the car as king, is casually alienating cyclists from its road network, and accepting their deaths on it, where's the harm in a bit of an increase in heart rate? The motons have the Clarksons, the trollumnists to raise their blood pressure and make them feel justified in putting cyclists in their place. Where are our High Priests of The Stupids to counter that?

Chougher wrote:

Instead, road.cc should concentrate on getting people to respect cycling and cyclists as users of road infrastructure, alongside pedestrians, horse riders, and, I dunno, pogo stick jumpers. But this takes more than 'gosh golly look at this awful white van man', so I absolutely don't expect this to happen. 

They do. Or do you have alternative suggestions? Maybe tweeting sensible, rational, evidence-based arguments like Chris Boardman? Publicise the W Mids Police campaign? You might have read about that here - it's been featured a few times. We absolutely need that approach, but it is taking a long time to bear fruit. Meanwhile, over 2 cyclists die per week, the majority of them killed by driver error. That isn't acceptable collateral, to me, and it needs to be addressed now, not in 20 years.

Rational argument, whipping up a bit of anger, and generating a few clicks do not have to be mutually exclusive. Throw other campaigns like the West Mids police one into the mix that is required to overturn *some* motorists' impatience and intolerance shown towards vulnerable rioad users. Can't say I'm a fan of the content, but we need the whole mix in the campaign.

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PapaSmurf [31 posts] 6 months ago
0 likes

Death threats, thats enough to go to the police, they should have a chat.

 

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whobiggs [128 posts] 6 months ago
1 like
Leviathan wrote:

Okay, forget all the stupid muffled effs on both sides... What about the slow cyclist daudling through the red lights at 1:30? This is exactly the kind of shit that causes problems. 

 

Sorry but someone riding steadily and sensibly is not the cause of other people getting impatient and losing it!

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billsukhbir [32 posts] 6 months ago
0 likes

I lived in that part of London and did my daily cycle commute along the OKR from 2007 to 2015, when I left for 'sunny' East Sussex.  When I look back, I realise that the residual level of aggression amongst people; cyclists, motorists, pedestrians, or not, was generally horrible and I can't understand how I accepted it as 'normal' for so long.  Happily, no one was physically hurt on this occassion...