Near Miss of the Day 256: Cyclist records close pass – then runs into police red tape

Our regular series featuring close passes from around the country – today it’s Somerset

Filming a close pass is one thing, but getting police to act on it means complying with any requirements regarding the submission of video evidence laid down by the relevant police force – as one reader has learnt to his frustration.

Ian told us that the incident in the clip below happened “at the end of a 64-mile ride and only 400 yards from home.

“A check on the GOV.UK website shows that the Mini was untaxed at the time of incident.

“The video was taken with a smartphone mounted on handlebars after I had an ‘aggressive pass intended to intimidate’ by a BMW driver on Saturday 9 February 2019 on the same stretch of road.

He said that the incident and video had been reported to police, but added: “Unfortunately you can only upload a video to Avon & Somerset Constabulary if the incident happened in the last seven days, you can provide a video showing two minutes either side of the incident, the video is timestamped, you are prepared to give a full statement, attend court if required and the video clearly shows the vehicle registration number.

“So, it would seem that Avon & Somerset Constabulary do not want to make it easy for a cyclist to report these incidents unless you can fulfil all criteria before submitting a video.”

While any action camera will give you the option to add a timestamp while recording, if you’re using a smartphone to take video it’s unlikely that your default app will have such a facility.

A solution might be to download an app that does and use that to record footage – one example being Timestamp Camera, which is available for both iOS and Android devices.

It's probably also a good idea to refresh your knowledge periodically about the specific requirements of the police force(s) responsible for the areas you typically ride in to avoid any pitfalls.

> 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 has been news editor at since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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