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Do You Support SB 1464, the 3-Foot Passing Rule?

A bill has passed the state senate requiring automobiles to pass no closer than three feet to bicyclists. Napa cyclists support the proposed law; what do you think? Take our poll and tell us in the comments.

In the wake of several vehicle collisions that have left bicyclists dead or injured, our question of the week is about SB 1464.

The proposed state law, making it a legal requirement for automobiles to give bicyclists a minimum clearance of three feet when passing, has the support of Napa cyclists.

You can read more about the bill in from the Napa County Bicycle Coalition.

SB 1464 has passed the state Senate and is up for a vote by the Assembly Friday. How would you vote if it were up to you?

Tell us in the comments, keeping in mind that we ask commenters to use names when taking part in our community dialogue.

If you'd rather remain anonymous, you may email your comment to napa@patch.com.

Either way, please take our non-scientific poll below to let us know where you stand on this issue.

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Belle (Orchid Lady) August 29, 2012 at 08:39 PM
>Bicycles in Travel Lanes< When passing a bicyclist in the travel lane ensure enough width for the bicyclist, typically 3 feet. Do not squeeze or force a bicyclist off the road. Bicyclists may occupy the center of the lane when conditions such as a narrow lane or road hazard make it unsafe to ride in a position that may provide room for a vehicle to pass. With any slow-moving vehicle or bicycle, drivers should follow at a safe distance. When it is safe, the bicyclists should move to a position that allows vehicles to pass. Remember, bicyclists are entitled to share the road with other drivers. Page 35. of the CA drivers handbook http://apps.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/dl600.pdf
F Otterbeck August 29, 2012 at 08:57 PM
Are you making the point that this is a specious law?
Belle (Orchid Lady) August 29, 2012 at 11:10 PM
@ F Otterbeck, I was somewhat replying to what someone said earlier about 'we should find out what laws we currently have' regarding this issue. I went to where I had see it in the drivers hand book, and posted it. I don't think it's specifically a "law" but it's in the handbook, and it's common sense to allow 'room for a cyclist' while passing in a vehicle. I also felt it could point out "why" a bicyclist might not move over immediately for a vehicle, on narrow mountain roads. I don't think passing a law requiring the "3 feet rule" will solve anything, but merely serve as a 'reason' for police to pull people over. It will also contribute to more accidents, because people will be required to cross in to the other lane where there is no 'bike lane/shoulder'. IMHO The only 'good' thing I could see it doing would be, IF a person was accused of injuring a bicycle rider, that could be an additional charge? :)
Louisa Hufstader October 09, 2012 at 08:56 PM
Updated: Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed the bill Sept. 28, arguing it would expose the state to expensive litigation.
John Richards November 15, 2012 at 10:14 PM
Although I'm a Republican I give our governor credit for having a lot of common sense!

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