A video posted online by cyclist Evo Lucas shows him being stopped by a police officer regarding his road position while riding in London .
In the video, a police car is seen passing Lucas as he rides down a relatively narrow residential road. Lucas’s front and rear-facing cameras capture the entire incident.
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The police car passes Lucas, with Lucas exclaiming “excuse me” as he deems that the vehicle is too close to him.
As Lucas rides past the police car later on, the officer winds down his window. Lucas says “Are you in a hurry, sir?” and the officer then asks whether Lucas wants to pull over. He declines, and then the officer puts on his blue lights, pulls around Lucas and then the two stop in the road.
The officer then gets out of his car and says “Do you want to explain, first of all, why you are cycling in the middle of the road, making it difficult for vehicles to pass you. And then when I did, safely, you shouted – what was it you shouted?”
Lucas replies: “Excuse me”.
“Why, did you feel that I was encroaching on you?”. Lucas replies, that he thought the officer was too close to him.
The officer continues: “I did try to go as far to the right as I could, but you were so far in the middle of the road, on purpose, that I found it very difficult to pass you.”
“Can I ask you sir, to please give a bit more space to traffic trying to pass you?”
To which, Lucas says: “No, sir, I am entitled to use the whole road and you are entitled to do 20 miles per hour on this 20 miles per hour road, too.”
“Which I was doing,” says the officer. “Now, you’re getting to a fine line of obstructing other vehicles.”
Lucas asserts that he was doing 20mph, as does the officer.
“You need to get on board, how the Highway Code is, sir,” Lucas says as he rides away and continues his journey to work.
Later, Lucas linked to a video on Twitter of another cyclist getting doored by a driver exiting a parked car in a similar residential road, saying “This is why”.
The incident has elicited views from both sides of the argument as to whether Lucas was in the right or wrong with his road positioning.
“No question for me, that clip needs to find its way to his police station and his superiors. If you are on the speed limit and he overtook, like he did without being on a blue light call, then pulls you over with blues on for actually answering his question honestly (and that was his issue, you politely said you didn’t want to pull over). Also he overtook you, then immediately slowed down, intentionally causing an obstruction to traffic travelling in accordance with the law,” read a comment left by stuinNorway under the YouTube video.
Eric Von commented: “Serves you right for riding in the middle of the lane. Shame he didn’t give you a hefty ticket…”
James Chalmers said: “Typical new age cyclist drives down the middle of the road and demands he has the right to do so. cyclist do not have the right to hog the road, they may like to think they have but they don’t.”
Macdaddy said: “This is the kind of idiotic behaviour we, as cyclists, are subjected to every day from drivers. However you don’t expect it from someone in a position of authority. Shame on the Police Officer – an embarrassment to his profession.”
West Midlands Police traffic unit – who have been involved in a successful initiative to dissuade drivers from ‘close passing’ cyclists – commented on the video, saying “Maybe segregated car lanes where drivers get the space they need to be safe & worry free are the answer…”