Thursday, February 9, 2012

Is the "3 feet to pass" law effective?

The Boise Weekly is reporting that two years after a new law was instituted, requiring motorists to clear a cyclist by at least three feet when passing, that law has only been enforced once.

So - does such a law make any difference?

The officers who issued the citation weren't aware of the law until they looked it up in the book. (Or however they look such things up these days.) The offender claimed he couldn't yield the three feet because "traffic prevented him from getting over." Which is totally bogus - if you can't safely move over on a public road, you slow down and wait until you can! (And the cyclist claimed he had plenty of room; he was just being a jerk.) The judge agreed, found the guy guilty, and fined him $80. (Sweeeet!)

Cyclists interviewed for the story don't think the law is working. I would agree... after the law was passed and publicized, it seemed to me like there was slightly more caution exercised by drivers. (Just like there was for a couple months after that deadly May when 3 Boise cyclists were killed on the roads.) But then it was back to Business as Usual. Which reinforces my notion that we need EDUCATION (publicity) and ENFORCEMENT if we want to have compliance.

(The key to getting somebody prosecuted, is to be able to positively identify 'em to the cops. A license number, and a description of the car and driver, and you're in business.)


Clancy Anderson said...

I thought that law was silly from the get go. If a car is travelling 25mph, 3 feet is fine. If the car is travelling 55mph, I would like alot more space than 3 feet.

Clancy Anderson said...
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