The driver of bus number 9507 passed me dangerously close I was riding my bike on 100 S and approximately 600 E at 9:10 AM on 1/19/07. He then merged completely into the right lane, forcing me to slow quickly to not be hit by the back of the bus.
I was traveling in the right lane approaching the intersection at 500 or 600 east. I was traveling in the right half of the lane as close to the parked cars as prudent at the speed I was traveling. I was using the lane in accordance with Utah traffic code section 41-6a-1105 sub sections (1)(c) and (1)(d)(ii) which allows for use of the traffic lane by cyclists. When the driver passed me he was clearly in violation of section 41-6a-706.5 which states that "An operator of a motor vehicle may not knowingly, intentionally, or recklessly operate a motor vehicle within three feet of a moving bicycle, unless the operator of the motor vehicle operates the motor vehicle within a reasonable and safe distance of the bicycle."
It startled me because I was traveling very close to the posted speed limit and there was an open lane next to me. The driver could easily have moved over into the other lane and given me ample room to ride safely, yet he chose to pass me dangerously close putting me in harms way for his own convenience.
At the next light I talked to the driver and informed him that the law required that he give me at least 3 feet while passing. He said "then stay out of the lane!" He also apparently changed the route number of the bus from 5 to 42, because when I looked at it after he passed me it was 5, but after I confronted him and told him I would be reporting the incident, the number was suddenly 42. Route 42 does not travel on or near 100 S this far East.
Surprisingly, the driver was completely ignorant of the section of the traffic code mentioned above which gives cyclists the right to safely operate in the traffic lane under certain circumstances, and apparently oblivious to the section of the code that requires other vehicles to pass safely. I am infuriated by this drivers reckless behavior and cavalier attitude towards cyclists. I think that in the interest of public safety, UTA has the responsibility of making sure that it's drivers are educated in bicycle safety and operate their vehicles accordingly. The last thing anyone wants to see on the news is a cyclist and a bicycle crushed under a bus.