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Near Miss of the Day 631: Oncoming lorry driver forces cyclist onto pavement

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

Today's video in our Near Miss of the Day series shows the moment a cyclist had to jump onto a pavement as a lorry driver, travelling behind a car, came in the opposite direction taking up the available width of the road, narrowed due to cars parked on the right.

Anita, the road.cc reader who sent in the clip, said: "I just left my house and as I turned onto the main road I approached some park cars on the right meaning oncoming traffic would have to move over to pass them - not really a problem but bear in mind I had high vis clothing and a LED daytime running light a car came through followed by a truck ...

"I would have thought he should have given way or was I at fault because I had my normal head down and wanted to carry on?"

"Needless to say when he carried on I had to hop onto the pavement as he was uncomfortably close.

"Passed to Wiltshire Traffic Police as a close pass incident but they were not interested.

"Sad to say just after this there were two accidents involving school age children on Ermin Street - local people will know about these," she added.

Now, Highway Code Rule 163 provides that road users should "give way to oncoming vehicles before passing parked vehicles or other obstructions on your side of the road."

Often, though, what the Highway Code says and the driving a cyclist experiences out on the road are two entirely different things, of course.

Given that the rider here was wearing hi-viz and had a flashing light, the driver should have seen her and stopped and waited before the parked cars to let her through.

In this case, as you can see, the driver didn't - and given the truck driver was following the car through that narrow section, they may well not have anticipated anything coming the other way, far less someone on a bike (which is not, of course, to say that they shouldn't be looking).

If anything, it's an episode that serves as a reminder that if you're a cyclist coming up to this kind of situation where the road is narrowed due to parked cars and there are vehicles coming in the opposite direction, even if their drivers should according to the Highway Code wait it's better to play it defensively and pull over until those vehicles have passed.

> 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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