An undercover police operation is returning to raise awareness for Road Safety Week.

Operation Close Pass will see unmarked patrol vehicles on the lookout for drivers overtaking too closely to cyclists.

Police and Crime Commissioner for Dorset, Martyn Underhill, said: “Many drivers believe they leave enough space for cyclists when they overtake but this isn’t always the case. You should leave a minimum of 1.5 metres between your car and the cyclist when overtaking, and at high speeds or bad weather you should allow a full car width.

“Essentially, you should overtake a cyclist as you would a car.”

The operation has previously been carried out on Buxton Road in Weymouth, where drivers were given the opportunity to opt for roadside education in a pop-up tent, instead of the usual £100 fine and three points.

Mr Underhill added: “Cyclists are among the most vulnerable road users in the UK, with over 100 cyclists and motorcyclists injured every day in needless, preventable crashes.

“As the nights are drawing in it is even more important that drivers look out for road users on two wheels, and that road users on two wheels make themselves as visible as possible.

“Cyclists are legally

required to have lights on their bike (front and rear) but should also consider wearing reflective clothing to make them more visible. Drivers should always look for cyclists and motorcyclists, especially at junctions, and regularly check their mirrors and blind spots.

“Education and awareness are an important part of making our roads safer. There are a variety of courses and initiatives in Dorset for people to take advantage of, including specialist courses for motorcyclists.”

During Road Safety Week, a new initiative for Dorset and the first of its kind in the UK, ‘DocBike’, will also be offering free rider training, including what to do in the event of an accident.

Mr Underhill added: “It is an initiative that is saving lives. All riders can improve their skills - police motor bike riders undergo continuous training to enhance their riding skills.”

Road Safety Week is led by the road safety charity Brake to promote road safety, which is asking drivers, cyclists and motorcyclists to be “bike smart”.

To find out more visit, and visit for more information about the DocBike initiative.

The theme of this year’s Brake Road Safety Week 19 – 25 November 2018 is for road users on both two wheels and four (or more) to be #BikeSmart and show due consideration for each other.

More information about this national charity can be found on its website

Dorset roads policing officers, including the No Excuse team, are taking part in and supporting a number of activities during the week, all with the aim of improving safety on the county’s roads.

Police and Crime Commissioner Martyn Underhill said: “With over 100 cyclists and motorcyclists injured every day in needless, preventable crashes, they are among the most vulnerable road users in the UK. It is therefore fitting that this year Road Safety Week is focusing on the safety of those who travel by either bike or motorbike.

“Road safety is an important issue for our communities and for a small Force, Dorset Police is punching well above its weight. I encourage everyone to think about the decisions they make while using our roads and to be considerate of other road users and their safety.”

Dorset Police officers will also be present at a public consultation on keeping horses and riders safe on the road, hosted by the British Horse Society from 7.30pm on Thursday 22 November at Durweston Village Hall. There is free entry and free tea and coffee and all are welcome. Further information at

The week kicks off with the Safe Drive Stay Alive initiative at Weymouth Pavilion which will be attended by young people from surrounding colleges.

Now in its 13th year, the partnership presents emergency services personnel on stage to tell their stories of dealing with the results of road traffic collisions. These emotive and hard-hitting presentations reach out to new and pre-drivers, influencing behaviour and attitude on the roads.