Close overtakes research

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
Giles Pargiter
Posts: 65
Joined: 15 Sep 2012, 11:34pm
Location: N & Mid Wales.

Re: Close overtakes research

Post by Giles Pargiter »

Interesting thing that I find scarcely ever mentioned and bearing in mind that I usually cycle in the N. of Wales, Mid-Wales, and the gap between. Also bearing in mind that in the past as a professional driver I have made the personal observation that driving attitudes in different areas do vary quite considerably.

One of the things I frequently find is that motorists do not overtake when they easily could. I often find that they wait behind for ridiculous periods. When having slowed to wait, I would prefer that they passed me even if they are much closer than would be safe if they had not slowed.

One of the most dangerous things that I keep noticing is that they not infrequently give me so much room that they pretty much clip mirrors with oncoming traffic. I think often I'am in more danger of being hit by a vehicle involved in such a collision than I'am of having my elbow clipped.

This is not to say that I do not suffer the occasional dangerously close high speed pass but I find these often appear to be deliberate "punishment passes" by drivers who think they own the road.

In short it seems to me, many motorists are pretty clueless about overtaking, full stop - especially when it comes to cyclists.
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Posts: 421
Joined: 11 Dec 2013, 4:15pm
Location: Swansea Valley

Re: Close overtakes research

Post by Neilo »

My experience of close overtakes. I cycle in rural south wales, is the worst offenders seem to be women, mid 20s to mid 30s and WVM, but only slightly. When I am driving, following a car, that is about to overtake a cyclist, I can generally tell from their style of driving, body language as it were, who will, or will not give enough room.
My pet theory is that it is due to the selfish society that we have become. The "it's my Human rights" type. It's my right to have 12 kids and live off the state, or it's my right to play my music as loud as I want, or it's my right to be on this road, and how dare you hold me up. Their rights, not the rights of others to peace and quiet, or the right of someone not to be in fear of their life when on the road.
I think education of EVERYBODY is the key, motorists and cyclists.
Public information films of the past were great. Hands up who remembers. Reginald Molehusband parking a Morris 1000. Or Clunk click every trip (I know it was jimmy Saville, but the message not the man). Or Charlie says. Or Hey Petunia. Or my favorite, the old guy on a bike " that's why he stayed alive so long"
That's my opinion anyway, may be I'm just cynical.

If it aint broke, fix it til it is.
Posts: 6
Joined: 7 Dec 2013, 1:32pm

Re: Close overtakes research

Post by K.S.G. »

1-2% are passing dangerously close but many, many more pass too close for comfort. Based only on a survey of one (me) I'd say that about a third to half of all drivers in towns and urban areas pas too closely, and or cut in too soon. Cutting in too soon is made worse by pinch points. The only way I know to mitigate this somewhat is to adopt a strong primary position at a correctly judged distance before the pinch point. This is not without its problems as some drivers will still cut in anyway making it even more worrying whilst some will drive too closely behind and roar past soon after in frustration at having been slowed down for a couple of seconds.
I agree with all those who have said driver education is the only way to reduce this sort of behaviour from motorists. There has to be a winding down of the utter sense of entitlement that some drivers seem wedded to.
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