Stop Trying to Kill Me!
I live less than 2 miles from my daughter’s school but because there are no footpaths on the route she qualifies for a free bus pass, which in itself is a no brainer and 99% of the time that’s her mode of transport.
On occasion she will ask if she can cycle to school, her cycling to school is actually us cycling to school and back. Her desire to cycle is something that I actively encourage, while some (maybe most) parents will be hoping for rain clouds to pack the bikes away I’m not of that mindset.
The Killing Fields or the A338
So here is the issue, our route to school takes us along the A338 at a time of day when some people may be less interested in cyclist and more interested in getting to work on time or dropping their own little cherub off at school.
Thankfully I never seem to have an issue when I’m with my daughter as she cycles in front and I sit behind her just off the right hand side of her back wheel, if you are going to hit her, you’re going to have to get through me first.
Once I’ve said farewell to my daughter the fun begins, on my way home I try and cycle considerately, I stay very close to the curb, I signal nice and early and if I’m holding up a large vehicle or a bus I will pull in if possible but people will still pass me too close and it’s not the occasional vehicle neither is it all vehicles, I’d say at the moment it’s 50/50.
There are two occasions when it gets even worse the first is if I’m in front of a driver that has a problem with overtaking me and stays behind for longer than necessary, as soon as they manage the overtake (usually with loads of room) all the cars following take their frustration out on the cyclist, even though the car driver was the cause of them being delayed a few seconds.
The second time and the reason for this blog post is on the approach to a particular part of the A338. The road narrows, my side of the road has a solid white line, there’s a slight incline and bend to the left, not a good place to overtake but still people will perform the craziest overtake only to enter a 30mph zone and if as I suspect they are regulars they will be held up by the parked cars outside the primary school.
On Tuesday the 11th October I was returning from the morning run and I was overtaken by a Salisbury Reds bus in what could be described as a perfect overtake but in the same space of 5 minutes I was passed at less than 1.5m on many occasions and the last car passed me at the point mentioned above, far too close and with a vehicle coming towards us.
I posted the video of this on Facebook with the intention of giving the Reds driver some praise and highlighting some crazy car drivers, a few people said the usual ‘you should report this to the police’ I did my classic eye role and shouted at the screen “I’m not in London or Wales” (as at the time I thought those police forces where the only ones accepting video submissions) but one of those that commented said something specific that made me look in a specific place on the Wiltshire Police website and there it was – Report a road traffic incident page in all its glory and including a tickbox to say I had footage of the incident.
5 minutes later the form was completed and I was uploading the video to my Google drive as the form wanted me to provide a URL to the video, with the video finnished uploaded and set to share with anyone that has the link I was done or so I thought.