Jul 28, 2014
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Lethal Summer for Cyclists

What can be done to make the roads safer for bike riders?

Lethal Summer for Cyclists

It's been a lethal summer for Sonoma County cyclists with five people killed since mid-May and many more injured in altercations with cars.

The latest incident occurred on Thursday when a Santa Rosa man was run over by a driver who chased him onto a golf course. The driver has been arrested and charged with assault with a deadly weapon while the cyclist recovers from a broken wrist.

But a new bill aims to reduce altercations between cars and bikes by requiring drivers to give bicyclists at least three feet of clearance when overtaking them from behind the same lane.

The legislation-- SB1464-- has already been approved by the California Senate and will be considered by the state assembly next. Proponents say it gives drivers a clear, measurable and objective standard for how to pass bicyclists safely and helps prevent cyclists from being hit from behind, the leading cause of cyclist fatalities. 

But is it enough? Or do cities need to do more to improve infrastructure for cyclists and charge motorists who hit bike riders? (So far only two Sonoma County drivers have been charged.) And will creating a minimum distance between cyclists and cars help prevent accidents?

Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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