A London cyclist filmed an encounter with a policeman who pulled him over for veering out of a Cycle Superhighway and into the carriageway.

The cyclist, known on YouTube as ClockwiseCycling, was travelling along the cycle route in Kennington, south London, when he moved out in front of the police car.

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The Metropolitan Police officer has words with the cyclist as he pulls alongside him, and when the cyclist pulls ahead the officer turns on his sirens to stop the rider.

“There’s a cycle highway there for you. For you to suddenly then come out it’s going to cause you to get knocked off your bike,” the officer told the cyclist.

When the rider told him that the Superhighway was too busy, the officer advised him to “be patient, like everyone else on this road”.

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“For you to suddenly come out [of the cycle lane] is going to cause you to get knocked off your bike, but you obviously don’t understand that,” the officer told the cyclist, adding “you will end up underneath a lorry because of the way you cycle.”

What do you think? Was the cyclist acting dangerously to pull out of the Superhighway? Let us know below.

  • Yitzhak Isaac Goldstein

    Quick, commentators.. get the boot into the cyclist! Get it in there!

  • Cris Doyle

    I was concentrating on the bit where the cyclist is alongside the copper, but in second viewing, he does pull out at the junction where the road is wider, so there was at least room to move to the side and you’re right, it’s not possible to know if he looked behind. He didn’t cross a solid white line either, whereas I suspect that the impatient guy with the yellow backpack did so he could overtake a couple of stationary cyclists at the lights. However, he didn’t pull into a space in the traffic, he pulled out alongside the copper and that’s a bit of a grey area. Personally, I would’ve indicated that I wanted to move out and waited for someone to make a space for me, rather than obliging the copper to pull back when the carriageway narrowed because there wasn’t enough space in the lane for them to be side-by-side. Poor skills and etiquette from cyclist.

  • theadebo

    As the camera is bike mounted and there is no recorded visible indication as to whether the cyclist did or did not indicate, did or did not check over his shoulder before manoeuvring, it’s a little puzzling at to why you are assuming/ascerting that he did neither?

  • Amy Fox

    The guy is totally right, also perfectly correct for not giving his name. if the cop has no reason to detain him he could have just got on his bike and rode off looks like the cop is just trying to meet his arrest / street caution quota !

  • richard

    But a sign to that effect would be illegal!

  • Guy

    “Causing distress to nearby motor vehicles”. That’s brilliant.

  • Gareth Nicholas

    This copper doesn’t know what he’s talking about. He could do with some cycle safety training. Of course segregated cycle lanes are safer, but roads are not overly dangerous if you use them correctly. The cyclist should use the road as he sees fit.

  • linked1

    But he’s not wrong.

  • Michael

    Did you get your ideas about what happens in a traffic accident by watching cartoons?

  • Michael

    No he didn’t. He behaved in an immature and unprofessional manner by repeatedly sounding his horn, getting agitated, losing his temper and ranting at the cyclist, getting them both to stop without ensuring both of their safety. Running off to grab a pen. He was like Arnold Rimmer at that point.

    “Right, that’s it. Time to get tough….what’s your name?” – and then when there’s no reply…he’s lost. He has no authority or presence. Mostly because he was in the wrong but also because he was flustered and not thinking clearly.

    There was no dump lorry there.

    You need to understand it’s emotive to say to someone “You’ll get hit by a lorry” if there is no lorry.

    Either the guy pulled out in front of a vehicle – in which case you’d say “You pulled out in front of this vehicle, my vehicle, or whatever vehicle it was, causing him to have to swerve or stop to avoid hitting you”

    Or he didn’t – in which case it was perfectly safe for him to pull out as he did.

    But, you cannot say “You’ll be hit by a lorry” which is not there. That is just fantasy. Especially when the implication was that the cyclist shouldn’t move out of his lane at all to overtake – he is told he has his lane, and he is told “you need to be patient” – as though overtaking a slower cyclist isn’t legal.

    What I’d expect a police officer to do is to have control over his emotions and to deal with any traffic violation without resorting to fantasies about imaginary lorries, without losing his temper and without arguing the toss and then losing the argument because his own opinions about what the cyclist should have done don’t actually match the laws he is supposed to be enforcing.

    Worse was him driving along the road sounding his horn over and over. When he played the sirens the guy stopped and yet the officer starts ranting about him not stopping and complains about the guys earbuds. But the guy did stop when the officer used the sirens. It was the officer who forgot his routine not the reverse.

    So no, good advice would have used facts, not fantasies. If he thought the cyclist should have checked over his shoulder, indicated and made sure the road was clear before changing lanes then he should have stated that. I think you recognise this is what he probably wanted to say but you are wrong to suggest that he actually gave this advice. If you watch again I’m sure you’ll see that you are just capable of seeing what the officer should have said and what point he was trying to get across. However he was incapable of articulating that point and which, at any rate, was mixed up with a lot of emotion and prejudice that shouldn’t have been present.

    This kind of “mirror, signal, manoeuvre” stuff is chapter and verse in the highway code, and he should have it well rehearsed. If this was some over enthusiastic rookie cop on his first day you might understand, but this guy is keen on telling us he’s been driving a police vehicle for 30 years.

    Ultimately he was so flustered he lost control of the situation.

  • David Chadderton

    No need to argue against good advice from the officer.

  • David Chadderton

    Exactly correct.

  • David Chadderton

    Don’t argue against good advic. Simple apology would be faster.

  • David Chadderton

    The officer gave good advice that the cyclist argued with. The officer did not want to have to scrape up a crushed cyclist from under a dump lorry.

  • David Chadderton

    Good answer.

  • David Chadderton

    Have safe lane discipline. Read Highway Code.

  • David Chadderton

    The officer gave good advice that the cyclist argued with.

  • David Chadderton

    Correct.

  • David Chadderton

    It’s a lane on the carriageway. Only change lanes in accordance with the Highway Code.

  • David Chadderton

    If you were a police officer or ambulance crew, would you like scraping a crushed cyclist up off the road? Think about it.

  • David Chadderton

    Yes, only change lane when clear and safe.

  • David Chadderton

    Change lanes safely, as in Highway Code. Look, signal, move when clear.

  • David Chadderton

    The officer gave good advice. No charge made.

  • David Chadderton

    Correct. Cycling in London, no,thanks.

  • David Chadderton

    Exactly right.

  • David Chadderton

    The Police Officer had a valid argument and gave good advice that the cyclist should wait patiently in line on the designated cycle lane to avoid moving out in front of motor vehicles and maybe causing distress to nearby motor vehicles. No incident was caused. There was nothing for the officer to write down. A simple apology would have greatly shortened the time wasted in spurious argument by the cyclist. Any road vehicle leaving its present lane is required to use mirrors to look back, look sideways to ensure there is clear road space, indicate moving to change lanes and not impede other vehicles; this applies to two wheels as well as four. Basic road courtesy and Highway Code. Cyclist would have failed the driving test with that manoeuvre.

  • Stevo

    Wrong.

  • linked1

    I think this raises a major concern with the introduction of bike lanes: it causes drivers to believe that the presence of a bike lane precludes bicycles from riding anywhere other than those designated lanes. But this is not the case – the rules of the roads remain the same – roads are not for the exclusive use of cars and cyclists can and must still be able to use them.

  • linked1

    Meanwhile the cop opens his door in the path of an oncoming motorcyclist.

  • David Ritchie

    well that may be his excuse, although he was more bothered by the guy he let go on his way so wasted his words and our time talking to the wrong guy. Just taking his own driving frustrations out on him because he spoke to back .

  • briantrousers

    +1 for the police in this instance. The zealots need to step down off their soap boxes and listen to what the officer’s saying, i.e. he’s advising the cyclist to stop riding like a tool in case he gets himself killed. Seems a bit churlish to complain about someone trying to save your life.

  • MJ

    No, they don’t. They are merely saying that the cyclists shouldn’t be jumping across lanes without the proper consideration for what is around him. Some people have that attitude, and they are wrong, but the police were not wrong in this situation.

  • MJ

    That’s not the point though. The point is that the cyclist veered out from within the cycle lane, into the flow of traffic, in a dangerous manner. The copper was right to suggest that he may want to think twice about doing that in the future. Yes, cyclists are free to use a cycle lane, or the road, but still have to use them safely. We, as cyclists, have a duty to look after ourselves, no one else is going to do it.

  • David Ritchie

    Your right. Its quite obvious that our cameraman was pulled over more because he criticised the coppers use of the horn against another cyclist that had manoeuvred in front just as the lights were changing. If the copper wanted to give some ‘advise’ to the other cyclist, who he let go in his way,he should have pulled them over rather do it whilst driving and talking through the nearside window. He then decides to pick on our camera man because he has the temerity to criticise him again and try to use the rest of the road space , whilst being seemingly obliviously to what else is happening in front of him , and possibly behind.

  • Frank Kotter

    I’m pretty clear about what happened. One action is illegal, the other is not. The police excuse the illegal behavior of motorists who pose a broad ability to maim and kill with their actions and concentrate on the behavior of cyclists who by definition are only a danger to themselves.

    This video is a perfect microcosm of that mentality.

  • Kelvin Morrison

    It’s never a great idea to take on the police regardless of whether your right, half right or indeed plain wrong. Life can become unnecessarily difficult.

  • Michael

    No, cyclists don’t have to use a cycle lane.

    Indeed it wouldn’t be possible to take many routes if you couldn’t move into one of the right hand lanes. It’s also perfectly legal in the UK to use another lane to overtake a slower moving vehicle.

    Whether this guy changed lanes in a safe and appropriate manner is questionable, but you’ll note the officer had no legal argument.

  • Paul Bambrick

    is it just me or do the morons think that just because there is a bike lane that its the law cyclists must use it?

  • Howmanyjackos

    Cant see where allverbthe drama came from? No where near causing an incident..sure the rider could have made a signal but with no approaching /encroaching vehicle’s there’s no need..
    OVERTAKING VEHICLE KEEP CLEAR.
    The cyclist could have made the same action due to wind , pedestrians, pot holes , puddles whatever. ..
    The verbal from the officer is ridiculous he is offering no more than threat .
    Institutionalised Iidiot ,Filth , PIGS rozzers , scum .
    sorry but they abuse the so called jurisdiction they have .

  • Steve T

    I ride this stretch of rode on a regular basis. The cycle lane/superhighway in question does get quite congested but it lasts for for all of 200m. The cyclist started where it crosses three major junctions/routes into London which can have the potential for being overcrowded and dangerous. The stretches either side of the lane whether coming up from either Brixton, Clapham or Camberwell and through to either Vauxhall, Kennington or Elephant and castle, offer wide lanes with plenty of space to go as quickly as you want (as long as you get the rub of the lights) for miles either side.

    In my opinion the 200m lane is the best option for all road users and in the whole scheme of things takes a few extra seconds.
    Thought a bit of extra context should be given to the clip as there are a few people jumping to conclusions on here.

  • joe

    having rewatched the video the camera guy is receiving the bollocking for the other guy in yello rucksacks muscle thru. The motor bikes and mopeds are revving and nasty and they muscle thru and cut up even more. The driver pulling out on the left later causing the lead to brake is also not nice. Its all bad actually. Too many folk on the road.

  • joe

    Yes, the UK needs more signs. Many many more. Desperately. It is a wonder there are not more dead victims everywhere because of the current tragic lack of signage.

  • joe

    You think its permissible for those idiots on the motorway in a flash fast car who just overtake everyone when they like, in rush hour traffic, by doing a ton up the hard shoulder? This is the equivalent.

  • joe

    Not to mention its just bad courtesy to jump lanes when its not really ‘like that’ anymore… 15 yrs ago it was a free for all in London and i loved it. Cycling in NL 40km daily, as i live here now, means i also have to abide by the Dutch code which is when there is a decent (or in this case ok’ish) lane, you must use it or the cops will pull you over for holding up cars.

  • joe

    Clickbait title of this page. He was cycling dangerously imo. Guys like that in Amsterdam end up in canals or under trams. Or punched by another cyclist.

  • CockneyblokefromReading

    Stuart, I can’t just pull out of a congested lane 1 on a motorway. I have to wait for a gap first. The title of this article is totally (and depressingly-intentionally) misleading. We all know what’s going on with this cyclist here.

  • CockneyblokefromReading

    Frank, the car pulling out at 1.52 is pulling out of a junction. The officer’s attention is drawn to this cyclist at 1.40 and when the cyclist says, “Calm down mate” to him when the officer sounds his horn to the other cyclist who veered out in front of him at 1.32.

    I’m a cyclist and a driver, but cyclists in London seem to have a death wish. The officer is trying to give him some advice to keep him alive, but I’m afraid the same old ‘attitude’ comes out (and the cyclist clearly doesn’t know why a horn is sounded).

  • llos25

    I would not like to take sides if the cyclist pulled out in front of the police car then that is dangerous but what about the cars,hgvs and buses that use bike lanes to park or stop or undertake. I think the UK has a long way to go to catch up with the most of Europe where the cyclist is presumed right and cycle lanes are only for cyclists .

  • ibc

    Also, props to the cop for saying several times that the cyclist had a right to the non-bike lane, just that the cyclist has to change lanes safely.

  • ibc

    He cut off the cop. That’s a no-no. It has nothing to do with whether cyclists *must* use the lane or not. (At least in the US, that’s not required.)

  • Neb

    Disturbing if cyclists are accepting segregation. We have as much right to use the carriageway as any other road user, except where specifically prohibited (motorways, dual carriageways and so forth). The provision of a dedicated cycle lane makes no more difference to this than the provision of a bus lane does to a bus’s right to use other lanes.

  • Arch Stanton

    Jobsworth copper picking ‘low hanging fruit’. Last laugh with cyclist as Plod retreated into his community ‘panda car’ and continues up the bus lane!

  • Matt Hallett

    I’m with the copper on this one. He’s not saying the cyclist can’t ride on the road. He’s saying the cyclist can’t just pull out into the flow of traffic. If the cyclist was already on the road, or if he’d clearly signalled to move out before he did so then the policeman wouldn’t have an argument but from what I can see it’s a dangerous manouevre and he’s right for being stopped for it.

  • tim

    I don’t think he was pulled over for being on the road and not the bike lane . he pulled him over for pulling out of the bike lane in front of the car .

  • Cris Doyle

    What’s a ‘car lane’? It’s just a lane.
    Having said that, I suspect it would have been smarter riding for the cyclist in question to have looked, waited for a gap in the traffic and indicated before pulling out and overtaking. It’s just the same as changing lanes in any vehicle, anywhere.

  • Interesting you don’t think cycles should be allowed to be ridden in the road where there is a cycle path nearby. Dangerous precedent. There are perfectly good bus routes along that road, does that mean the motorists shouldn’t be allowed to drive because there’s a bus service specially laid on?

    The sooner we as people on bikes recognise we are equal in priority to people in cars the better. I note that the policeman wasn’t fussed about the vehicle pulling out sharply from the right, but was concerned that he couldn’t push past the cyclist who held his lane as the road turned towards the right. Traffic is traffic, whatever the mode.

    Regards
    Tony
    Bikesy co uk

  • Interesting you don’t think cycles should be allowed to be ridden in the road where there is a cycle path nearby. Dangerous precedent. There are perfectly good bus routes along that road, does that mean the motorists shouldn’t be allowed to drive because there’s a bus service specially laid on?

    The sooner we as people on bikes recognise we are equal in priority to people in cars the better. I note that the policeman wasn’t fussed about the vehicle pulling out sharply from the right, but was concerned that he couldn’t push past the cyclist who held his lane as the road turned towards the right. Traffic is traffic, whatever the mode.

    Regards
    Tony
    Bikesy co uk

  • Roland Lawrence

    i think the copper is laying it on a bit thick, but the guy should have stuck to the recommended separated cycle lane. maybe some signs that say “cyclists must use the dedicated cycle lane” might be an idea too.

  • Gazzaputt

    Bloody right you shouldn’t! If there is a designated highway like that then yes it should be ridden on. Look they have taken away car lanes for cyclists. Why infuriate motorists but blocking up there only passage when there is an adequate cycling highway? It’s not like it is a silly piddly cycle path you get dotted around London this is amjor infrastructure change made for us. Use it.

  • So with cycle superhighways cyclists aren’t allowed to ride in the road now?
    Regards
    Tony,
    Bikesy co uk

  • Frank Kotter

    The best part about this is that the cyclist in the roadway (legal) is the subject of this and the car pulling out and across the cycle way (illegal) causing the cyclist to slam on their brakes is what gets the officers’ attention. In the metro, what are officers doing in cars at all? They would be much more effective (and less expensive) if they were on bikes.

  • john

    what a complete tool, I wouldn’t want a car to veer into my lane so why would he veer into any other lane… the mind boggles

  • MJ

    Yes, yes he was. As a driver I always tut at impatient drivers who overtake when they shouldn’t so why shouldn’t that apply to cyclists? If the lane is too congested then he just has to wait until it is clear to overtake, like a car. Yes, before the cycling super-loon’s come along and tell me that the road can be used by cyclists as much as cars, i know. However, a specific, segregated, lane has been provided for cyclists to use, and use it they should. This kind of cycling is what gives cyclists a really bad name!!