Educating Drivers About Safely Passing Cyclists

That’s how you teach motorists how to share the roads with others:

Police crack down on cyclist road safety with operation ‘close pass’


Anyone refusing road side education will receive a fixed penalty notice of £100 and three points on their licence for the offence of ‘driving a vehicle without reasonable consideration of others’.

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Devon and Cornwall Police and Dorset Police Alliance have carried out an operation to improve the safety of cyclists on the road by education drivers on how to overtake them safely. During the two hour operation six drivers were stopped and all accepted safety advice from the police officers.

On Tuesday, July 11, the Devon and Cornwall Police and Dorset Police Alliance roads policing teams simultaneously launched Operation Close Pass.

Close Pass is an initiative intended to improve the safety of cyclists on the road by educating drivers on how to overtake them safely. It aims to raise awareness amongst motorists and cyclists alike on how to behave courteously to each other on the regions roads.

Head of roads policing for the Alliance, Chief Inspector Adrian Leisk, said: “Rolling out Close Pass across in Devon and Cornwall is in direct response to feedback we have received from cycling groups and individual cyclists about the danger and discourtesy they face on a daily basis on the regions’ roads.

“Our figures indicate approximately 400 or so collisions involving cyclists every year, 200 to 300 of which result in slight injury, 50 to 80 in serious injury. There were 4 cyclist fatalities in each of the years from 2012 to 2016.

“This initiative is very important in the safeguarding and education of our community of road users.”

Close Pass works by volunteer police officers in cycling clothes, effectively ‘undercover’, taking to the road on bicycles fitted with cameras which record the behaviour of drivers who overtake them.

If offences are found to have taken place, the officer radios colleagues further down the road to direct the offending vehicle into a checkpoint where the driver will be offered roadside education using a specially designed mat which illustrates the safe passing distance.



Anyone refusing road side education will receive a fixed penalty notice of £100 and three points on their licence for the offence of ‘driving a vehicle without reasonable consideration of others’.



200 Years of Cycling

Two Hundred years ago, a German nutcase invented the first bicycle and transformed the world.


From the ABC:


Cyclists celebrate ‘nutcase’ inventor as bike turns 200 years old


Cyclists across the country have celebrated the 200th anniversary of the world’s first bicycle ride.

Monday marks 200 years since inventor Karl Drais rode a bicycle for the first time, in the German city of Mannheim.

“Everything we have today … came from this machine. It’s as simple as that,” said vintage cycling enthusiast Stewart Clissold at a celebration in the Melbourne suburb of Brunswick.

“Karl von Drais saw a lovely young girl ice skating, and he saw how fluently she moved across the ice. And his idea was, if he was to put wheels under himself, he could move as gracefully as her.”

Other celebrations have been held in Sydney, Darwin, Bendigo and Geelong.

“It started a total revolution,” Charlie Farren of the Vintage Cycle Club said.

“We’ve got to thank this nutcase inventor.”

Bicycle’s creation linked to Indonesian volcano

The bicycle was invented as Europe suffered in the aftermath of an Indonesian volcanic eruption that caused chaos across the world.

“Back in the early 1800s, there was this phenomenal eruption, clouds of smoke and dust permeated everywhere [in Europe],” Ms Farren said.

“It’s said that the crops failed, the horses starved.

“This invention of Baron von Drais became a hit overnight because it wasn’t a horse, it didn’t need feeding. All it needed was you, your legs, a bit of energy, and you were away.”

The invention quickly became popular, mainly with affluent young men.

However, poor road quality meant they would often ride on the footpaths, which led to the machine being banned soon after it was created.

‘You just glide along’: riding a replica

Vintage cycling club members were proudly showing replicas to keen onlookers today, and explaining the machine had its limitations.

“I think not only was it the first carriage that went underneath a human, it was also the first natural contraceptive,” Mr Clissold said.

“I can assure you, after riding one a short period of time on rather rough cobblestone roads, you were not going home for anything other than a hot bath.”

However, Ms Farren said the replica was a delight to ride on flat surfaces, likening it to ice-skating.

“It’s a little bit like roller-blading,” she said.

“You get a beautiful stride going, and you glide along.”

The Regulation of Common Sense

In Australia we force people to wear helmets under threat of massive fines. Maybe we should just let them use their own common sense and work out what is a safe environment and what is not.

From “As Easy As Riding A Bike”

The helmet on the handlebars

At the FreeCycle event in central London on Saturday, there were, of course, large numbers of people wearing helmets and hi-viz tabards – not least because the latter were, as always, being handed out to participants.

But as I cycled around the event during the course of the day, I began to notice a distinct phenomenon. Something dangling from people’s handlebars.

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Read the full article here