How close can a close pass be yet not result in prosecution of the driver involved? Well, if it happened in the Thames Valley Police area, the answer is just close enough to not actually hit the cyclist, it seems.
That's the impression from the latest submission to our Near Miss of the Day feature, shot by road.cc reader Cycloactive in Ball Hill, Newbury, on 5 April this year, which merely resulted in the motorist being issued with a warning.
Cycloactive has been providing camera evidence of close passes and other incidents for several years now and is well versed in the procedures, as you'll discover below.
He told us: "The driver endangered the cyclist behind by passing far too closely before accelerating to pass the group of cyclists in front and causing the oncoming driver to have to brake.
"The video evidence shows driving which conforms to the CPS guidelines for dangerous driving, well below the standard of a careful and competent driver."
Here's an extract from the CPS guidelines:
The following examples of circumstances that are likely to be characterised as dangerous driving are derived from decided cases and the SGC Definitive Guideline:
Failing to have a proper and safe regard for vulnerable road users such as cyclists
Overtaking which could not have been carried out safely.
Cycloactive continued: "The driver was reported to Thames Valley Police who responded on 22 June as follows:"
The driver was identified by NOIP and interviewed under caution. The driver of the blue Nissan had no recollection of the incident.
The Process Officer reviewed the report, statements and video footage and concluded that there was insufficient evidence to prosecute the driver. The driver was formally warned.
He added: "Contrary to CPS Guidelines and the law, Thames Valley Police never prosecute a driving offence on independent cycle camera video evidence if a collision has not occurred."
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.