BikePortland.org » Blog Archive » Washington’s proposed safe passing law; and how it differs from ours

Did you know Washington State is looking at another safe-passing law regarding bicyclists? The three foot law did make the cut last year. It’s p;roponents are back for another try this time with language specifying obligations of the cyclists as well as the motorist.

So what’s to complain about? Lots if you are a hard-core vehicular cyuclist.

First, the law gives the cyclist the authority to decide how far to the right is safe. Could an officer, a judge or a jury override that?

Second, the law requires you to ride in a bike facility if there is one again based upon your judgement as to whether it is safe to ride that facility. I’m thinking narrow trails, lots of foot traffic and dogs and intersections might be why I’d stay off a bike path.

Third, the law treats cyclists as a special class expressly requiring us to ride on shoulders again at our discretion. That doesn’t seem to odius. I think most of us prefer the shoulder to the lane when a clean one is avaialbe But the suggestion is that the bike doesn’t belong on the road and that bothers some advocates.

This article from Portland makes the bill sound pretty good by comparison to Oregon’s safe-passing legislation.–Corrie

 

This year, Washington State lawmakers will consider a new safe passing law. The bill, House Bill 1018 (PDF), is just one part of what’s been dubbed as the “Mutual Responsibility Bill.” It appears to have support from both sides of the aisle (in total, eight democrats and three republicans support it) and seems to stand a better chance of passage than a similar attempt in 2008.

via BikePortland.org » Blog Archive » Washington’s proposed safe passing law; and how it differs from ours.

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