A Met cycling officer has been heavily criticised online after a video was posted on Twitter showing the officer pointing out to a cyclist – who had just narrowly avoided being struck by a red light-jumping taxi driver – “how many cyclists go through red lights”.
In the video below, shared online by the Twitter account ‘Naughty Drivers’, a cyclist attempts to make a right turn just as an oncoming taxi driver continues straight through a red light, nearly colliding with the rider.
Cyclist nearly hit by a taxi running a red, police fail to assist in any way and instead talk about cyclists who break the law - an outrageous reply from a cycling officer. @MetCycleCops @markandcharlie pic.twitter.com/g6BZu0I56u
— Naughty Drivers (@NaughtyDrivers) July 23, 2022
The incident occurs just as two Metropolitan Police officers cycle by, appearing to observe the scene. However, in the video one of the officers can be heard telling the cyclist that they “didn’t see” the near miss.
Instead, the officer says: “You obviously ride a bike quite a bit. So you see how many cyclists go through red lights in the course of a day.”
He then repeats the same point, before the cyclist argues that the conversation is “pointless”.
While the video posted on Twitter is heavily edited, the owner of the clip has said that they will send road.cc the unedited footage along with a fuller account of the incident, which we will of course share on this article.
The clip has resulted in a backlash on Twitter, with one cyclist describing the officer’s response to the incident as the “worst bit of ‘whataboutery’ I’ve heard in a long time”.
Mark Hodson, one of the two police officers who devised West Midlands Police’s renowned close pass operation, simply retweeted the post with the caption, “Oh dear”.
Another Twitter user wrote: “Anti cycling cop on a bicycle. Through the looking glass…”
Cycling lawyer and road safety campaigner Rory McCarron also said: “Bet they were forced to ride a bike for work or drew the short straw.
“No one who genuinely rides a bike by choice would say such nonsense. To help change behaviours of bad driving requires enforcement – will never change with attitudes like this.”
“Incredibly poor showing by the officers,” wrote David Caress. “The cyclist has been let down by two supposedly trusted pillars of society, the police and the taxi driver. I’m much more surprised by the former though, not the latter.”
When contacted by road.cc for a statement, the Met said that they will provide a response once they hear from the police officers in question.
Ryan joined road.cc as a news writer in December 2021. He has written about cycling and some ball-centric sports for various websites, newspapers, magazines and radio. Before returning to writing about cycling full-time, he completed a PhD in History and published a book and numerous academic articles on religion and politics in Victorian Britain and Ireland (though he remained committed to boring his university colleagues and students with endless cycling trivia). He can be found riding his bike very slowly through the Dromara Hills of Co. Down.