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1st Dec, 2021

It's time to lay down the law on giving cyclists room says Redditch driving instructor

A DRIVING instructor who teaches in Redditch and Bromsgrove wants the Government to make the amount of room motorists give cyclists a legal requirement, rather than advice.

Gerry Harrison, from Cosmos Driving School, said the 5ft (1.5 metres) gap mentioned in the Highway Code was more a suggested distance than a legal requirement like it was on the continent.

And Mr Harrison, who has been teaching people to drive for 25 years and holds the RoSPA Gold Advanced Driving status, said he welcomed the Close Pass scheme and other operations to improve safety for all road users.

“I have been a driving instructor for a long time and I don’t know any driving instructors who specifically teach 1.5m as a safe distance,” he said.

“The reality is if students did not leave a 1.5m gap on their test they would not fail, unless it was a dangerous manoeuvre to do so. I would, however, welcome a law change to make that the legal distance when passing cyclists.

“I always tell my students if they are in a situation where they would not pass a car, do not pass a cyclist.”

A Department for Transport (DfT) spokesperson said: “Protecting all road users is our top priority, and while we already have some of the safest roads in the world, we are always looking at ways to make them safer.

“That is why we launched the Cycle Safety Review in September last year, to make sure we continue to improve safety both for cyclists and others who share the roads with them.

“There are already laws in place to protect cyclists and police have clear powers to prosecute if these are broken.”


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