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Near Miss of the Day 866: £1,000 fine for close pass driver

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

A driver who made a very close pass on a cyclist in south Oxfordshire, cutting in on the rider due to other vehicles coming in the opposite direction, has been fined £1,056.

The cyclist, Adrian Thomas, told us that the incident happened on 27 March just past Shiplake College as he headed towards Reading on Henley Road.

He said that the driver, who failed to appear in court, also had his driving licence endorsed with five penalty points.

“The judge wasn’t impressed he didn’t attend,” he said, adding, “I think that move increased the fine considerably.”

Adrian added: “Lesson learnt? Hopefully.”

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

Over the years 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] or send us a message via the 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 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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LastBoyScout | 4 months ago

I know that road well, I ride it regularly.

Pretty much the whole of that road (A4155) from Marlow to Reading is fast, narrow and prone to close passes and bad overtakes, especially around Hampstead Hill, where my wife nearly got knocked off.

ChrisB200SX | 4 months ago

Could well be the same gammony-jeb-end that deliberately incredibly-close-passed me outside Reading Uni last week.

Caught up to him at the traffic lights and asked why he thinks he can risk my life to get ito the queueing traffic quicker, to which he blurted out some abuse about me not being in the cycle lane (shared-use pavement)... "what, when turning right here, the same as you are?!". His passenger then started with some verbal abuse but I couldn't hear it.

Only pathetic cowardly bullies drive like that, hopefully one day they will pick on the wrong person that will teach them the valuable lesson they deserve.

Sadly, my experiencing recently has been that drivers are getting worse for this, especially outside Reading University.

Hope this danger to the public has learnt to drive safer in the future! Perfectly good overtaking opportunity 3 whole seconds later.

OldRidgeback | 4 months ago

That was a very close pass. I'm glad the police took action. Maybe the driver will learn a lesson, maybe not.

Rendel Harris | 4 months ago

I feel that it would be appropriate that anyone who shows such contempt for the justice system should have their licence suspended until they can be arsed to show up and receive their sentence in person, paying the full costs of the additional hearing. Good result though, with the usual caveat/complaint that I've had several as bad NFA'd by the Met over the last year.

Off the back replied to Rendel Harris | 4 months ago

I would hope that anyone would be held in contempt of court and given an extra fine / community service for their behaviour. Unless the defendant can show a reasonable excuse for non-attendance they should be forced to be present imo. 

This sort of action by the courts should be highlighted and more effort for it to be brought to the general publics attention to show that poor driving can and will be punished. 

KentRider replied to Off the back | 4 months ago

First, more effort would need to be made to bring such ability to prosecute to the attention of other police forces. Sadly, until that happens, the “…and will be punished” part simply isn’t widely correct. Here in Kent, the victim of the close pass would have had to state on the online reporting form that a collision did not take place. On reading that, Kent Police would have immediately assigned it to NFA without ever viewing how bad the pass was. There is no option for submitting video with the initial report (instead, it can only be provided if requested by the police as follow up), which gives the police a perfect excuse for not spending any time on even the most hazardous of close passes.

Rendel Harris replied to KentRider | 4 months ago

Given up on making any reports of occurences on my forays into Kent since I had an NFA last year on a Ferrari and a Porsche racing each other who both passed me within 50cms on a downhill, where I was doing around 40mph, at approximately 90mph and then were shown on my video to be going side by side at that speed into a blind bend on a rise.

Mungecrundle replied to Rendel Harris | 4 months ago

You would think that a well deserved contempt of court charge might be forthcoming and that is punished far more heavily than many, what normal people would consider, far more serious crimes. The legal system does not like it when their playthings refuse to cooperate.

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