Cycling safety operation ‘Close Pass’ launched in Ipswich
PUBLISHED: 07:30 30 January 2020 | UPDATED: 08:34 30 January 2020
A police safety operation to highlight the dangers faced by cyclists as a result of motorists driving too close to them was launched this week.
Operation 'Close Pass' took place yesterday in and around Ipswich town centre and involved plain clothes officers going out on patrol to identify drivers who either don't allow enough room when overtaking cyclists, follow too closely behind, or 'left-hook' them by overtaking and then turning left across their path.
The officers on bicycles were equipped with action camera devices to secure and record evidence of driving offences. Any offences were then reported to uniformed officers on motorcycles who were deployed within the operation area.
A motorcycle officer then stopped any offending vehicles and provided the offence was not so serious as to warrant immediate enforcement action (e.g. drink-driving or dangerous driving), they were offered the chance to be escorted back to an engagement site for a voluntary educational input.
Any driver declining the offer of educational input faced being issued with a Traffic Offence Report for consideration of the offences of either careless driving, or driving without due care and attention.
The educational input sought to make the driver aware of why their manner of driving was careless or inconsiderate, inform them of the typical hazards faced by cyclists and the use of a 'Pass Mat' which highlights the spacing that should be used for cyclists, with 1.5 metres being the recommended overtaking clearance.