A Queensland cyclist has filmed a close encounter with a passing motorist as authorities remind drivers to allow ample distance when overtaking riders.
A clip shared by the state's Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) on Tuesday shows a small Hyundai passing a cyclist while beeping the horn. The vehicle overtakes the rider at roughly the same time another car is passing in the oncoming lane.
"Over the speed limit... and only inches from these bike riders," TMR said.
"This bone-chilling encounter is an example of just how terrifying and dangerous high-speed close passes are for bike riders."
The car appears to come within just a couple of feet of one rider, well within the metre and a half of space required by law when travelling at over 60km/h.
The cyclist can be heard voicing their displeasure at the passing car in the clip.
'Stay wider of the rider', roads authority warns
According to the Queensland TMR, the driver paid a big price for the infringement.
"As a result of this incident the driver lost their licence and was forced to pay a hefty fine—but it could have been far worse," it said.
"Bike riders are particularly vulnerable road users and have a higher risk of death or serious injury in the event of a collision with a vehicle.
"Far too many bike riders have been hurt on Queensland roads—so remember, stay wider of the rider."
In Queensland, when passing a cyclist on the roads drivers are legally required to do so at a distance of a metre. However when travelling at more than 60km/h, that expands to 1.5 metres.
Fine for driving too close to cyclist
As a motorist, you will get three demerit points and a $400 fine if you do not give the minimum distance when passing a bicycle rider, the Queensland government website says. If the matter goes to court, a maximum fine of more than $5,300 can apply.
When sharing the clip, TMR sought to preempt the vitriol often directed at cyclists on its Facebook page.
"Bike riding is a good thing. We want to encourage more of it. It's a really healthy way to get around and every bike on the road is one less vehicle—meaning it directly reduces congestion and pollution on our roads," it said.
"Motorists need to remember that bike riders are legitimate road users with the same rights and responsibilities as everyone else—but with less protection.
"And bike riders need to ride responsibly and obey the road rules to help foster positive attitudes and improve interactions between motorists and bike riders on Queensland roads."
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