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Near Miss of the Day 617: Bus driver pulls in on cyclist at hard-to-spot stop on mandatory cycle lane

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

A bus driver pulling into a hard-to-spot stop that breaks a mandatory cycle lane by Aberdeen’s harbour features in our Near Miss of the Day series today, together with a suspected punishment pass by a van driver on the same cyclist in a separate incident also caught on video.

It happened on Market Street, close to the Granite City’s ferry terminal as Liam, who told us it was “not quite a close pass but bad enough,” rode towards the city centre.

“Police Scotland wanted to prosecute but when they went to the bus company First wouldn't reveal the drivers name and cited GDPR [the General Data Protection Regulation],” he continued.

“The Police went through the process but First strung it out long enough for it to become time barred.”

You can see from this Google Street View image how there is a gap in the short, mandatory cycle lane to allow for a bus stop, which has no road markings, and the sign for it is on the side of the adjacent building.

Market Street, Aberdeen.PNG

It certainly wouldn’t be obvious for someone riding that road for the first time, although Liam said he rides the road regularly and knows to look out for buses at that location.

“I think the cycle lane was an afterthought with Aberdeen City Council,” Liam said. “I’m aware the bus stop is there and at that point it’s not mandatory so always watching for a bus pulling in.

“But at this time the passenger ringing the bell was too late and the driver threw on his indicator and pulled in without checking his mirror.”

You’ll notice that the passenger raises their hand on exiting the bus – not to thank the driver, says Liam, but to apologise, saying it was his fault.

The second incident happened on Great Southern Road, heading towards Holburn Street.

“Again, Police Scotland wanted to prosecute but the van was registered in England, had been sold at some point and at some point had been on hire/loan.

“They passed the matter to Lincolnshire Police who sat on it, then when they did the legwork to identify the driver (who they assure me was spoken to) the matter had become time barred.”

He added: “This one was shocking because he had the whole other lane to pull into. I suspect it was a punishment pass.”

> 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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