Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
Phil Fouracre
Posts: 795
Joined: 12 Jan 2013, 12:16pm
Location: Deepest Somerset

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby Phil Fouracre » 12 Jul 2019, 11:34am

Got to disagree with you on this. I’ve been doing the ‘strategic wobble/wander’ for a long time now, and, it does seem to have some effect. A bit like anything that you feel might help, it is up to the individual what they decide is suitable for them. So much is a matter of perception and confidence. Forgetting the the wobble, I’ve had enough difficulty over the years getting people not to ride in the hedge! let alone anywhere near primary. Best I’ve seen is a local guy, who rides in full hi-vis, inc his helmet, who I’ve seen brushing the hedge with his shoulder, and, he says he has hundreds of close passes, figure that out!
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity

firedfromthecircus
Posts: 251
Joined: 23 Jan 2012, 7:50pm

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby firedfromthecircus » 12 Jul 2019, 11:51am

Kick his [rude word removed] in.

andrec
Posts: 110
Joined: 1 Jul 2019, 12:35pm

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby andrec » 12 Jul 2019, 12:11pm

I always use the lane as much as possible which is nearly all the time. This causes some motorists to toot their horn at me or shout at me to get out of the way as they eventually pass, but the photo in the Highway Code Rule 163 is very clear. To overtake a cyclist a motorist should move over into the next lane just as he would to overtake any other vehicle. If the next lane is the oncoming lane and is always full of traffic that is not the cyclist's fault.

Stradageek
Posts: 594
Joined: 17 Jan 2011, 1:07pm

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby Stradageek » 12 Jul 2019, 12:20pm

The key with the strategic wobble is that it alerts a driver that you are not a stationary object that can clipped as close as a gatepost.

If a specific wobble seems risky, the alternative is to 'wobble' continuously. There is a school of thought that says that this is why I NEVER get close passes on my recumbents. Recumbents can't be body-balanced so, from behind, appear to weave and wobble much more that an upright bike.

Of course (as I've posted before) it could just be that all recumbent riders are assumed to be disabled and it's not PC to kill a disabled rider :D

Vorpal
Moderator
Posts: 17050
Joined: 19 Jan 2009, 3:34pm
Location: Not there ;)

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby Vorpal » 12 Jul 2019, 12:37pm

I have sometimes found wobbles to be a useful tool, but if alexnharvey is being harrassed by this particular driver, it may not be a safe strategy.

I agree with reporting it to the police. Even if it's a hassle, I would report it every single time it happened, and start using a camera. Other advice to add a flag or trailer, might help. Riding a bit further out might also help, but again, if the driver is deliberately harrassing the OP, it might also be a risky strategy.

Unfortunately, there are no easy answers when it comes to something like that. :( I hope that police deal with it.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

Bonefishblues
Posts: 6718
Joined: 7 Jul 2014, 9:45pm
Location: Near Bicester Oxon

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby Bonefishblues » 12 Jul 2019, 12:53pm

Vorpal wrote:I have sometimes found wobbles to be a useful tool, but if alexnharvey is being harrassed by this particular driver, it may not be a safe strategy.


Indeed - exactly what I was attempting to convey. The OP is already being intentionally harassed already by a specific individual, who, in his words

"I have told him that he is passing me too close once when I caught up at traffic lights. If anything his behaviour has worsened since then."

and we are advising him to wobble towards this person?

Can we just give a bit more thought, sometimes?

alexnharvey
Posts: 754
Joined: 10 Jan 2014, 8:39am

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby alexnharvey » 12 Jul 2019, 12:56pm

The road is on a long slight incline. When I complained to him of his first close pass he complained that I was weaving all over the road. I am not, it is likely my assertive positioning that he takes issue with. As all idiots know, this is fair grounds for a punishment pass. I certainly would not like to start a confrontation either, and of course even if I did 'win' that fight, I'm then vulnerable again the next day and all those thereafter.

I could potentially continue along the same route as him and try to identify his workplace, possibly reducing his sense of anonymity and impunity, in addition to reporting to the police and getting a camera and mirror.

Vorpal
Moderator
Posts: 17050
Joined: 19 Jan 2009, 3:34pm
Location: Not there ;)

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby Vorpal » 12 Jul 2019, 3:30pm

alexnharvey wrote:The road is on a long slight incline. When I complained to him of his first close pass he complained that I was weaving all over the road. I am not, it is likely my assertive positioning that he takes issue with. As all idiots know, this is fair grounds for a punishment pass. I certainly would not like to start a confrontation either, and of course even if I did 'win' that fight, I'm then vulnerable again the next day and all those thereafter.

I could potentially continue along the same route as him and try to identify his workplace, possibly reducing his sense of anonymity and impunity, in addition to reporting to the police and getting a camera and mirror.

If he is driving a company vehicle, it may do some good to complain to the company.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

Postboxer
Posts: 1433
Joined: 24 Jul 2013, 5:19pm

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby Postboxer » 12 Jul 2019, 7:25pm

Get a camera, report it to the police every time it happens, even if it's every day, surely they can't ignore it forever. Keep reporting it until something happens.

User avatar
RickH
Posts: 4457
Joined: 5 Mar 2012, 6:39pm
Location: Horwich, Lancs.

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby RickH » 12 Jul 2019, 9:59pm

Mick F wrote:Buy a lollipop.
They stick out nice and wide with a big red reflector too.
Mount it so it's as far out as you can.

This sort of thing.
https://www.roaduserdirect.co.uk/index. ... ct_id=3386
Another idea is to carry an umbrella and mount it sideways with the pointy end outwards.

Maybe the best thing, is to alter your clothing so you look like someone else.

A garden rake is probably better, preferably with the teeth facing backwards! :twisted: (and of course a hi-vis vest tied to it like "professional" drivers do when there is something sticking out at the back of their vehicle! :D )

Maybe even mount the lollipop on the end of the rake! But do devise a mechanism so you can make it all go vertical in an instant to get through narrow gaps!

User avatar
TrevA
Posts: 2098
Joined: 1 Jun 2007, 9:12pm
Location: Nottingham

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby TrevA » 12 Jul 2019, 10:41pm

Bonefishblues wrote:
Vorpal wrote:I have sometimes found wobbles to be a useful tool, but if alexnharvey is being harrassed by this particular driver, it may not be a safe strategy.


Indeed - exactly what I was attempting to convey. The OP is already being intentionally harassed already by a specific individual, who, in his words

"I have told him that he is passing me too close once when I caught up at traffic lights. If anything his behaviour has worsened since then."

and we are advising him to wobble towards this person?

Can we just give a bit more thought, sometimes?


Rather than a wobble, I find an exaggerated side to side motion whilst riding out of the saddle to be effective ( something like Sagan employs in a Tour sprint finish). It makes you look a bit wild and out of control, though in fact you are in complete control. Of course, you would need to know that he’s coming up behind you to do this.

Bonefishblues
Posts: 6718
Joined: 7 Jul 2014, 9:45pm
Location: Near Bicester Oxon

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby Bonefishblues » 12 Jul 2019, 10:51pm

TrevA wrote:
Bonefishblues wrote:
Vorpal wrote:I have sometimes found wobbles to be a useful tool, but if alexnharvey is being harrassed by this particular driver, it may not be a safe strategy.


Indeed - exactly what I was attempting to convey. The OP is already being intentionally harassed already by a specific individual, who, in his words

"I have told him that he is passing me too close once when I caught up at traffic lights. If anything his behaviour has worsened since then."

and we are advising him to wobble towards this person?

Can we just give a bit more thought, sometimes?


Rather than a wobble, I find an exaggerated side to side motion whilst riding out of the saddle to be effective ( something like Sagan employs in a Tour sprint finish). It makes you look a bit wild and out of control, though in fact you are in complete control. Of course, you would need to know that he’s coming up behind you to do this.

Just to be clear are you advocating the OP does that in this scenario?

User avatar
TrevA
Posts: 2098
Joined: 1 Jun 2007, 9:12pm
Location: Nottingham

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby TrevA » 13 Jul 2019, 8:20am

Up to him and would need some practice and probably a mirror to see what is coming up from behind, but I have used this tactic when feeling threatened with close passing traffic.

COYB
Posts: 4
Joined: 22 Jun 2019, 11:41pm

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby COYB » 17 Jul 2019, 8:40pm

I know a cyclist who had the same issue. He fixed a length of sponge pipe insulation tubing to the offside of his bike. The tubing was about three feet long and was fixed to the rear rack, just behind the seat post. He covered the end of the tubing with hi-viz tape. The offending driver then used to aim for this safe distance indicator, treating it as a sort of game. Eventually the hacked off cyclist fitted a couple of short sharp nails at the end of the tubing and the harassment stopped. Its not something I would advocate doing myself but it did solve his problem.

User avatar
mjr
Posts: 13515
Joined: 20 Jun 2011, 7:06pm
Location: Norfolk or Somerset, mostly
Contact:

Re: Repeated close passes by driver on commute

Postby mjr » 17 Jul 2019, 10:57pm

Ivor Tingting wrote:Don't be under any illusions, Cambridgeshire police are crap when it comes to reporting drivers who close pass, intimidate and threaten cyclists. I was hit and run they were absolutely useless. Case closed after 2 weeks, insufficient evidence. I wouldn't even bother reporting anything to them now as I used to report drivers periodically. Not any more. They always make out that you're at fault. Anything to fob you off and not do any work.

Please keep reporting things. Just don't expect them to do much. But please keep reporting because it screws up their crime stats and one day Cambs might elect a commissioner who gives enough of a toss about human life to act upon it.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.