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bikeolounger

Nothing Whatsoever To Do With Kilting, But...

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Y'all know I use bicycles as primary transportation, right?

A friend in a nearby city has been cited three times for what the various police departments have called "Careless driving." What is interesting to me about this is that my friend was driving her bicycle in what cycling educators call "best practice," controlling her lane. The road in question has four lanes (two each direction) plus a two-way left turn lane (for what it's worth), and a poor excuse for a shoulder (covered in a range of debris, including but not limited to glass, rocks, gravel, sand, parts of trees, parts of crashed cars--you get the picture. It's not a good place to be on a bicycle for a NUMBER of reasons). She is facing a court case in August.

The County Attorney filed a motion for an injunction against my friend, in effort to ban her from driving her bicycle on the road in question. As a side note, the nearest alternate route would involve an extra five miles of travel each way, includes roads that are less-safe (same speed limit, but poor sight lines, hills, curves...), and would add almost an hour to her daily commute. Imagine being told that your commute to work has to include extra mileage simply because you drive a pickup truck rather than a motorcycle, and you'll get that picture. The request for the injunction was denied by a sensible judge, but that doesn't mean my friend's case is resolved.

I'm not fond of hyperbole. I don't like "crying wolf."

I don't think I am, though, to say that this case can affect MY right to travel on public roads. I have accordingly donated to my friend's legal defense fund, and will probably do so several times in the coming months as my own finances permit. Won't you toss in a shekel or three, please?

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I teach the ADD course for the National Safety council. Many states enforce the Bicycle Safety Act including Colorado and Massachusetts, does your state have this law in place? Was the cyclist making a left turn at an intersection?

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I'm interested in keeping up to date on this because my goal is to be able to commute to work riding my bike.

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Jetstar, I'll have to reread the Bicycle Safety Act to which you refer. My memory of it is that it has some questionable underlying assumptions (that mirror belief by many who clearly think cyclists are inferior road users). That said, Kentucky's statutes regarding traffic law are woefully behind the times in many ways. I am hoping that once we update our laws, we will bypass some of the already-outdated codes that many other states have on their books, but I'm only so optimistic.

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