Rule 129 of the Highway Code tells road users that, where the carriageway has "double white lines where the line nearest you is solid," they "MUST NOT cross or straddle it unless it is safe and you need to enter adjoining premises or a side road;" It adds that they "may cross the line if necessary, provided the road is clear, to pass a stationary vehicle, or overtake a pedal cycle, horse or road maintenance vehicle, if they are travelling at 10 mph (16 km/h) or less."
Let's leave aside the subjectivity of how a driver is expected to assess the speed of another vehicle ttravelling in the same direction, and focus on the safety aspect.
This video, shot by road.cc reader James, shows him first being overtaken rather closely by the driver of a tanker lorry, then closer still by a person in a black car, and finally, the closest yet, by someone driving a white van - who executed the manoeuvre despite oncoming traffic.
James said: "I reported to West Midlands Police and the driver has been offered a driving course. I also sent a link to the company and received a reply from them that was much more concerned with having the video removed from YouTube than anything else."
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 (link is external).
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.