Watch van come 'dangerously close' to child cycling on the road in London

6 December 2022, 16:49

Van and child have close encounter in north London

By Kit Heren

Viewers have been left divided by a car driving 'dangerously close' to a child cycling on the road in London.

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In the video, posted to Twitter by the child's mother, cycling and low traffic neighbourhood advocate Francesca Savage, the child is seen cycling firmly on the left hand side of the road.

They veer out slightly to the right at one point, when the van is seen within a few feet of the child, before overtaking.

The child being overtaken by the van
The child being overtaken by the van. Picture: Twitter/@francesca_kms

Ms Savage said: "Completely empty road this morning. I feel this van could have given us slightly more space.

“If we want to get kids to travel more actively we need to make it safe!”

The child cycling as the van approaches
The child cycling as the van approaches. Picture: Twitter

People reacting online were split in how they viewed the incident, which took place in Haringey, north London.

One viewer said Ms Savage was putting her child to danger by allowing them to cycle in the first place.

He said: "Putting your baby in such a dangerous situation you should be ashamed of yourself

A second added: "Should really teach your child to ride safely instead of wobbling all over the road. If not ready yet maybe not have them on the main road!"

The van right next to the child
The van right next to the child. Picture: Twitter

While a third asked: "Why weaponise your child and put them in danger to make a political point on cycling? No baby should be cycling on the road."

But others were more sympathetic.

One Twitter user said: "I am very angered by the van driver for failing to give the child enough room. 100 per cent van driver not parent at fault.”

Another added that “the van needed to slow down, give more space and take more care”.

The van overtaking the child
The van overtaking the child. Picture: Twitter

According to the Highway Code, drivers should leave "at least 1.5 metres when overtaking cyclists at speeds of up to 30mph, and give them more space when overtaking at higher speeds".

And drivers should not overtake cyclists or horses if they cannot give the 1.5m.

This is the latest controversial video of children cycling in London, with a recent clip even leading broadcaster Jeremy Vine to clash with former Cabinet minister Sajid Javid.

In that video, which has millions of views, the child is cycling along a residential street in Kingston, South West London, in the rain.

His dad, who is behind him, is heard telling the boy to "carry on" as a car approaches them from the other direction with its headlights on, but as it passes without hesitation he shouts "are you going to stop? What are you doing?"

He shared the footage on Twitter, tagging cycling advocate Jeremy Vine, and wrote: “How can we expect parents to let their kids ride to school if this is how their neighbours drive towards them? He’s five by the way and this is 100m from his home.