Like this site? Help us to make it better.

Near Miss of the Day 853: Driver of lorry urging cyclists to “Please take extra care near this vehicle” fined for close pass (includes swearing)

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

The driver of a lorry bearing a message on the side warning cyclists to “Please take extra care near this vehicle” has been fined more than £562 for careless driving after, you guessed it, making a close pass on a cyclist.

The rider on the receiving end of the close pass in October 2022, which saw the driver cut across his path, was reader Tom, who told us:

This was my final cycle into work from my old house before moving closer into Oxford (14 miles now down to 2 miles...). This took place across the two roundabouts near the Wheatley services off the M40, coming from Thame -> heading to Oxford through Wheatley.

The first roundabout has a left turn only lane for the M40 South, a straight on lane for the A418, and a straight on lane for the M40 North/right turn into a golf club. Then at the second roundabout you have a left turn only into the services, a straight on to the A418, and a right turn only to the M40 North. Both occasions you can see I take the middle lanes to carry straight and also take up a central position.

The driver of the truck you can see (their shadow) loom behind me as I enter the first roundabout, then as I approach the second roundabout he comes alongside me, then as we both are about to enter the second roundabout he essentially sideswipes me forcing me into the left turn only lane for the services. I was very lucky that there wasn't a vehicle turning left into the services here. I'd apologise for my language during the incident but luckily the swear words all roll into one giant inaudible mess. I will apologise for the ones that come after. As you can see we both transition through the roundabouts at the same speed and once we're on the A418 there's a straight open bit of road to overtake or there's the dual carriageway A40 a bit further on.

The irony of the giant yellow 'PLEASE take care near this vehicle' sign for cyclists heading towards my face wasn't lost on me either...

I reported this once I got home and then didn't hear anything for months, until January when I got told that it would be going to court as careless driving and may need to attend. I have just had a call today letting me know the driver was in court yesterday, they got 6 points and a fine of £562 for careless driving.

> 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.

Add new comment


nniff | 1 year ago

The fact that it went to court rather suggests that the driver thought that others would consider that there was nothing wrong with his driving, for otherwise he'd have taken the 3 points and low fine.  Worrying, given the nature of his vehicle

Rendel Harris replied to nniff | 1 year ago
1 like

nniff wrote:

The fact that it went to court rather suggests that the driver thought that others would consider that there was nothing wrong with his driving, for otherwise he'd have taken the 3 points and low fine.  Worrying, given the nature of his vehicle

He may not have been given the option, the police/CPS aren't obliged to offer an FPN; it can be sent straight to court if deemed serious enough. Maybe the assessing officer was a cyclist!

TGT replied to Rendel Harris | 1 year ago

This was my understanding when I got the call. The officer apologised for not letting me know sooner about the careless driving charge and that I'd potentially be needed in court but the backlog was massive so it was taking ages.

Genuinely surprised and happy with the outcome. Not so much with the driving.

eburtthebike | 1 year ago

“Please take extra care near this vehicle”

Obviously a warning, not an instruction.  Well done for getting a result.

ymm | 1 year ago

Every time this driver did his vehicle checks (pre-trip) they would have been reminded of the need to consider others. Problem is that the massive sign attempts to put the onus of responsibility upon others, not the driver of this vehicle, to consider safety when it is fact they should be taking heed.

brooksby replied to ymm | 1 year ago

I'd thought that was a feature not a bug: they warned you to take care around their vehicle/ not to ride close &c &c so they don't need to take any more responsibility.

HoarseMann | 1 year ago

This must be Thames Valley. After the trouble I had getting them to prosecute a driver, I'm pleased to hear they have taken this to court off the inital submission without any further prodding.

Maybe things are improving when it comes to police taking action against dangerous drivers. I do hope so, as this was a shocker. Utterly lethal driving with total contempt for the cyclists life.

Looking back at streetview images of this roundabout over the years, the road markings have changed several times. At one point the right lane was wrongly marked as straight ahead until you got to the roundabout! For several years you could go straight ahead from two lanes. However, the road markings are clear now: that only the middle lane is for straight ahead. In any case, the driver should not have expected the cyclist to move into the lane for the services, nor attempt an overtake across a junction.

belugabob replied to HoarseMann | 1 year ago

I've come to the conclusion that there are too many lanes, on the approach to a lot of roundabouts.
All that happens is that drivers get creative with their lane choice, or the marked lane directions are very ill considered.
Congestion ensues, as people have to brake to avoid poor manoeuvres.
The obvious example of this is the A303 roundabout, just to the west of Stonehenge. All of the approach road have one lanes in each direction, but widen out to two or three at the roundabout. The MGIF folks then just use this as an "overtaking opportunity " but then have to filter in, as they leave the roundabout. I can't help thinking it would be better to just continue the one lane layout, and let everybody take their turn - at least there would be no queuing to exit the roundabout.

eburtthebike replied to belugabob | 1 year ago

Junctions are designed to have many lanes to "cure congestion".  The capacity of a road is largely determined by the capacity of junctions, hence roads are designed with massive junctions, which are then dangerous, especially for cyclists.  Queues always start at junctions, and just imagine how far back they'd go if drivers couldn't stop side by side.

Shame about the cyclists, but hey, capacity matters.

bikes replied to HoarseMann | 1 year ago

Good spot.

IME People veer all over the lines at these types of junctions which can be worrying as an adjacent driver and terrifying as a cyclist.

Latest Comments