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Near Miss of the Day 574: Van driver fined after passing cyclist “within inches” head-on

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

Today’s video in our Near Miss of the Day series shows a van driver coming “within inches” of a cyclist on a country road in north Essex – with the rider submitting the footage to police, resulting in the driver being prosecuted and fined.

The incident happened close to road.cc reader John’s home in Duddenhoe End in the northwest corner of the county, close to its borders with both Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire.

John told us that after submitting the video to Essex Police, “I didn’t hear anything for a while, but I got a call from them recently to tell me that the driver had been prosecuted. 

“It seems he was charged with and pleaded guilty to driving without due care and attention. I think he was also charged with driving without tax, but I can’t be sure of that. 

“He was fined £200 and had to pay court costs of around £120.  He also got four points on his licence.

“A result, but one that would have preferred not to have had to report as it was pretty scary having a van pass within inches of me,” John added. 

“It was also totally inexcusable as visibility was good, I was cycling close to the edge of the road and the road widens at the bend.”

> 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 has been news editor at road.cc 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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