Police launch crackdown on drivers in Leeds cycle accident black spot

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Police will target drivers who pass too close to cyclists on a busy commuter route in Leeds.

West Yorkshire Police and Leeds City Council have launched the Operation Close Pass trial on Headingley Lane and Otley Road, the area with the highest accident rate for cyclists in Leeds.

From early May on the A660, non-uniformed police cyclists equipped with hidden cameras will identify vehicles which have passed dangerously close, before radioing the car's details to colleagues. The driver will then be intercepted by a police patrol at a designated holding point, where they will be given advice on safe overtaking.

In the last five years, there have been 88 accidents involving cyclists on the road, which runs through Woodhouse, Hyde Park, Headingley anad West Park, and is heavily used by students.

The Highway Code stipulates that a vehicle should give cyclists 1.5 metres of clearance when overtaking - and the full width of a car if doing so at higher speeds.