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Near Miss of the Day 441: Close pass on exiting roundabout

Our regular series featuring close passes from around the country - today it's Berkshire...

Roundabouts are a road feature that crop up regularly on our Near Miss of the Day feature, most often because a motorist joining one has failed to spot a cyclist already on it. Today though we have something slightly different, with a driver overtaking a cyclist on the exit from a roundabout where there is simply not enough room to pass the rider safely.

The clip was sent in by road.cc reader Steve. who filmed it in Binfield, Bracknell
on Friday 10 July 2020 at 10am. 

"I was riding West along Forest Road." he told us. "A driving school car overtook me before the roundabout so that I was forced to take the roundabout in the left hand lane.

"As we got near the second exit the Mercedes driver overtook me, failing to
take account of the oncoming vehicle, resulting in a very close pass. 

"Thames Valley Police have sent a letter to the registered keeper," he added.

> Near Miss of the Day turns 100 - Why do we do the feature and what have we learnt from it?

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.

> What to do if you capture a near miss or close pass (or worse) on camera while cycling

Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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14 comments

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LetsBePartOfThe... | 3 years ago
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Only the following driver is at fault here. But upon exiting I would have taken the primary position very early ( whilst still circulating clockwise so that I remain between the car and the exit ) and would have continued to hold it by going wide through the exit and down the road. The driver would not see a daylight opportunity to overtake until on the straight road with a clear oncoming lane to use. We have to try to only leave them the safe option as otherwise they always choose the right-now option 

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EK Spinner | 3 years ago
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I have a similar road layout near me (left and straight on, no right turn) with 2 clearly marked lanes on the approach. I always signal well in advance and use the correct lane, on one occasion I was under taken by a van using the left turn lane to go straight ahead. I gesticulated (may even have shouted) when he drove across the front of me he then stopped and told me I should have used the left turn lane (to keep out the way) like any sensible person would have

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alexcr | 3 years ago
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No need for the passee to apologise for being in the left-hand lane – unless I'm missing some signage, that's exactly where he should be for the second exit afaik. The driving school car shouldn't have been in the inner lane for that manoeuvre – hope it's not the instructor driving!

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wycombewheeler replied to alexcr | 3 years ago
1 like
alexcr wrote:

No need for the passee to apologise for being in the left-hand lane – unless I'm missing some signage, that's exactly where he should be for the second exit afaik. The driving school car shouldn't have been in the inner lane for that manoeuvre – hope it's not the instructor driving!

roundabout has two exits, if the left hand lane is for the second exit, where is the right hand lane for? U turns only?

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alexls replied to wycombewheeler | 3 years ago
2 likes

In this case, unless otherwise indicated by arrows, the left hand lane is used to turn left (1st exit), the right hand lane to turn right (3rd+ exit) and either lane can be used to proceed straight ahead (2nd exit).

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EK Spinner replied to alexls | 3 years ago
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but there isn't a third exit (other than a full U turn which vary rarely has a lane or gets signed) so I would say when the lanes are unmarked there is one for each exit and hence the rider was not in the correct lane. Now this may be because he was forced there by the driving school car (and may be partly because he left it too late or didn't signal) but these factors we dont know. The following car was reasonable to expect the rider to turn left since that is the lane he was in, however once he had not taken that exit the driver had a responsibility for avoiding any potential incident with the knowledge that the rider ws still on the r/bout and was either taking the exit or going ll the way round (??) either way the driver should have eased off or braked.

in summary: Not great riding - Very bad driving

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mdavidford replied to EK Spinner | 3 years ago
2 likes
EK Spinner wrote:

I would say when the lanes are unmarked there is one for each exit

According to the highway code you should use

  • the left lane for the first exit
  • the right lane for an exit to the right or going full circle
  • 'the appropriate lane' for any other exit

So in the absence of any signs or lane markings, it leaves it up to the road user to determine what's an 'appropriate lane' for going straight on. Arguably it's more appropriate for a slower road user to maintain position in the left lane, rather than move across lanes into the path of another vehicle for the sake of it. Taking the lane should be enough of an indication of your intentions to go straight on for anyone who's paying attention. 

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EK Spinner replied to mdavidford | 3 years ago
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there are 2 approach lanes, and 2 exits each with a single lane, there is no right turn.

Anything other than "lane 1 for 1st exit" and "lane 2 for 2nd exit" involves traffic merging on a single lane exit, this is exactly what happened here and nobody is suggesting that was good. Yes the driver shouldn't have attempted to pass (force his way in) but the road positioning on the approach wasn't great in my opinion

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mdavidford replied to EK Spinner | 3 years ago
1 like

There's no right turn, so that part doesn't apply, and you're just left with use the left lane for the first exit and 'the appropriate lane' for straight on. What's 'appropriate' is in the eye of the appropriater.

Traffic merging into a single straight on exit is no different to what you would have in a typical arrangement where there are two unmarked approach lanes, a left exit, a straight exit, and a right exit.

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FrankH replied to alexls | 3 years ago
1 like
alexls wrote:

In this case, unless otherwise indicated by arrows, the left hand lane is used to turn left (1st exit), the right hand lane to turn right (3rd+ exit) and either lane can be used to proceed straight ahead (2nd exit).

I agree. I would have been in the left hand lane as a matter of course. And although it's not strictly "by the book" I would have indicated right to give following drivers notice that I'm not turning left

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bikeman01 | 3 years ago
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Might want to get the time setting updated on that camera.

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Hirsute | 3 years ago
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Steve maintains innocence but I can read between the lines of "A driving school car overtook me before the roundabout so that I was forced to take the roundabout in the left hand lane." Clearly set up the driver by means of entrapment.
Sorry, I have been reading too many comments on local news sites.

Yet more sorry driving standards and the inability to look beyond the end of hte bonnet.

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ktache | 3 years ago
4 likes

Just so he could get to the arse of a learner driver that little bit quicker...

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Richard D | 3 years ago
3 likes

It's at 1:40 and onwards if you want to skip to the exciting bit.

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