Today’s Near Miss is something of a rarity, as it features footage shot not from a cyclist’s action camera, but from a car’s dashcam. From this driver’s-eye perspective, the video neatly encapsulates how to overtake a cyclist safely and responsibly – and also how to endanger the lives of everyone on the road.
The video shows road.cc reader Stephen, who sent us the footage, performing an overtake on a cyclist, leaving the rider with plenty of room. Just as Stephen passes the cyclist, who is riding in the bike lane, a motorist driving a BMW squeezes between them at speed, barely missing both the bike rider and Stephen’s car.
The rearward footage of the incident also shows the impatient driver preparing to overtake the car and cyclist at the same time as they exited the roundabout, before Stephen moved into the middle of the road.
The incident occurred on the same road where Mark Richards was struck by a hit-and-run driver in April 2021, leaving the NHS worker with multiple fractures in his spine.
Stephen, an experienced cyclist with his own fair share of near misses while riding his bike, told road.cc: “I have been commuting on this road by bike to and from work for over 10 years and in that time have reported a number of near misses to police with most resulting in successful prosecutions.
“I was actually driving in the evening after work with my daughter as passenger. As I entered the road from the roundabout, I immediately noticed a cyclist ahead in the cycle lane with a bright red backpack and moved to straddle the centre line to give him plenty of room when passing, as I would hope for if I were cycling.
“I'd also noticed a boy racer in a black BMW flying around the roundabout and approaching me fast from behind. Initially they moved over the centre line to overtake on my outside but then I assume he thought he was a racing driver and decided to cut back inside and undertake me instead, despite the obvious danger to the cyclist who must have been clearly visible given my road position.
“I immediately sounded the horn, as much to warn the cyclist as the driver, and watched in horror as he "zoomed by" (my daughter's words) missing the cyclist by no more than an inch or two. You can see from the rear video the thoughts of the cyclist.”
Stephen later exchanged details with the cyclist and reported the incident. The driver was charged with careless driving and pleaded guilty shortly before the case was due to begin.
They received three points on their license and a £250 fine, which Stephen described as “disappointing… given the seriousness (nearly killing someone) and deliberate nature” of the manoeuvre.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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.
Ryan joined road.cc as a news writer in December 2021. He has written about cycling and some ball-centric sports for various websites, newspapers, magazines and radio. Before returning to writing about cycling full-time, he completed a PhD in History and published a book and numerous academic articles on religion and politics in Victorian Britain and Ireland (though he remained committed to boring his university colleagues and students with endless cycling trivia). He can be found riding his bike very slowly through the Dromara Hills of Co. Down.