Simon MacMichael March 28 2017
Leicestershire Police and Devon & Cornwall Police, which runs its roads policing unit in partnership with Dorset Police, are the latest forces to adopt the campaign targeting motorists who pass cyclists too closely that was launched by West Midlands Police last year.
The award-winning campaign has been widely praised by cycling campaigners and road safety experts since it was unveiled in September.
Devon & Cornwall Police was one of three forces represented in Birmingham yesterday to see the initiative in work first-hand, the others being Dorset Police and Wiltshire Police.
An earlier briefing day in January saw 18 police forces participate, including Leicestershire Police, with a number confirming afterwards to road.cc that they would be adopting the approach taken by West Midlands Police.
In response to a tweet from the office of the Devon & Cornwall Police & Crime Commissioner about the visit to the West Midlands, Caspar Hughes, co-founder of Rollapaluza and a campaigner with the group Stop Killing Cyclists, asked: “Will be we seeing the Close Pass Initiative being policed in Devon & Cornwall soon?”
He received a reply from the Chief Inspector Adrian Leisk, head of roads policing for Devon, Cornwall and Dorset, confirming that it would be rolled out to the three counties.
— Devon & Cornwall PCC (@DC_PCC)
Meanwhile, the Leicester Mercury reports that Leicestershire Police will begin close pass operations, which see plain clothes officers on bikes alert colleagues about motorists giving them insufficient room, during the summer.
Eric Ludlow of Leicester Cycling Campaign told the newspaper: “Every cyclist will have experienced the sensations of a car flying past them at a very close distance.
“Even for experienced cyclists it can be extremely frightening.
“We have been in discussions with the police in Leicestershire about this since their colleagues in the West Midlands tried it.
“We were hoping for a few crumbs but the police have served up a full meal.
“We are very grateful to the police for taking on board our request.
“I am sure it will make a real difference to the safety of anyone riding a bike in the city and county.”