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  1. #1
    Senior Member sggoodri's Avatar
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    BL use mandatory under proposed Florida law

    Anybody know more about this?

    http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/opi...a-news-opinion

    Unfortunately though, SAFE does not believe that all bicyclists will use designated 5-foot bicycle lanes voluntarily. And, if they do not, the small number of bicyclists who flout designated 5-foot bicycle lanes will be responsible for creating a ferocious backlash from motorists. Motorists, who are many times more prominent on the road than bicyclists, will say, "why build bicycle lanes for bicyclists if they don't use them?" How can anyone argue against that logic?

  2. #2
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sggoodri
    Who or what is "SAFE," besides the one person who wrote the OP - ED opinion piece cited by the OP?

    I don't get my shorts in a bunch every time somebody posts a URL, out of context, citing a letter to the editor, or some lone "representative" or "spokesman" making a left field proposal.
    Last edited by I-Like-To-Bike; 02-14-07 at 08:33 AM.

  3. #3
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    i bet john forester and his antibiking spiel, along with his compadres efforts at the american dream coalition has got something to do with it.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  4. #4
    One speed: FAST ! fordfasterr's Avatar
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    I posted a comment... I suggest that if anyone wants to get word in, to do it fast because the articles "dissapear" into the " pay per view " section after a few days -but the comments last FOREVER !!!!
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  5. #5
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    Hey FF, aren't there like maybe two bike lanes in the entire state?
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  6. #6
    genec genec's Avatar
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    except when there are obstacles in the bike lane, when safely passing another bicyclist and when making a left turn.
    Typical to the exceptions in CA... I suspect there are more exceptions too but perhaps for the sake of brevity, they were left out, such as the CA exception of moving at the speed of other same direction traffic or being able to leave a BL in the presence of right turns.

    Essentially the laws require riding in bike lanes when it is safe and practical to do so... It is often quite easy to find an exception to riding in bike lanes.

  7. #7
    Senior Member sggoodri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
    Who or what is "SAFE," besides the one person who wrote the OP - ED opinion piece cited by the OP?
    http://www.heraldtribune.com/apps/pb.../1014/NEWS0106
    Bike lanes: Use them or lose them


    SAFE, for Safety As Floridians Expect, has, from the very beginning of its existence, argued for separate travel lanes for all road users -- i.e., designated 5-foot bicycle lanes for bicyclists, sidewalks for pedestrians and vehicle lanes for motorists.

    Bicyclists must recognize the difference between riding on a road with a designated 5-foot bicycle lane and riding on a road that has only a 3-foot paved shoulder.

    SAFE believes that bicyclists should ride within the designated bicycle lane, except when there are obstacles in the lane, when passing another bicyclist if it is safe to do so, and when making a left turn.

    On the other hand, where there is only a 3-foot paved shoulder, bicyclists should have the right to share the road and take the "lane" if it is not dangerous to do so.

    Unfortunately, SAFE does not believe that all bicyclists will use designated bike lanes. Those who flout these lanes will be responsible for creating a backlash from motorists. They will ask, "Why build bicycle lanes for bicyclists if they don't use them?" How can anyone argue against that logic?

    SAFE has fought hard for these lanes, so they should be used as intended.

    Motorists should realize the benefit of bike lanes: not being inconvenienced by being stuck behind slower bicyclists. If bicyclists flout their designated lanes and pedal in vehicle lanes, drivers will have every right to be perturbed.

    SAFE does not want to see public sentiment turned against the entire bicycle community. We believe that the only way of preventing that is with a new law discouraging bicyclists from riding on the road when there is a bike lane. This is in the best interest of the bicycle community. Safety is a two-way street.

    Jim Smith

    Chairman of SAFE

    Delray Beach

    Elmer "El" Parent

    Parent is a member of Sarasota Manatee Bicycle Club, Florida Bicycle Association, Rails to Trails Conservancy and Manatee Friends of the Trails. He resides in Bradenton.
    SAFE appears to be a group of vocal bike path and bike lane advocates who are promoting both user-class-separation and laws requiring cyclists to use separate facilities where they exist. From some of the other opinion pieces I saw posted by Jim Smith, a primary target of their proposed law is groups of cyclists using an entire travel lane.

    More on this:

    http://www.flabikes.blogspot.com/

    Thursday, February 01, 2007
    A misguided effort to regulate group riders


    (Updated February 2)
    A visible South Florida activist, Jim Smith, is mentioned today as backing a drive to break up the large groups of riders commonly seen on popular routes such as Crandon Boulevard. The report is from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, and unless you read it carefully it incorrectly suggests, ever so subtly, that former bike racer Raphael Clemente also supports the idea.

    The two men are probably right that clumps of 50 or more riders don't help the image of bicycling, and they certainly discomfit motorists. Sometimes a group ride will include hotshots who barrel through intersections in disregard of signs and signals, risking harm to others as well as themselves. Current traffic laws, of course, address that misbehavior and I believe give law enforcement suitable tools to bring reckless riding into check.

    The danger I see in Smith's proposal, launched on behalf of his Palm Beach County organization, SAFE (Safety as Floridians Expect), is that he also wants to require that cyclists use bicycle paths wherever they exist. That would be a step backward -- both in safety and in encouraging bicycle transportation. Not all paths are good ones, which is why skillful riders often prefer a public road. Then there's the issue of crossing side streets and driveways, where riders are more vulnerable to collision on the path than they are on the main street.

    Sorry, Mr. Smith, I believe your plan is a bad one. We just have to support enforcement of the present traffic laws -- which do, after all, fully apply to bicyclists -- and at the same time use peer pressure and public scorn to tamp down the cut-ups who give group riding a bad name.

  8. #8
    Commuter JohnBrooking's Avatar
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    Off topic, but the www.flabikes.blogspot.com site has this great picture. Look carefully:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Quote Originally Posted by MadfiNch on Commuting forum
    What's the point of a bike if you can only ride it on weekends, and you can't even carry anything with you?!
    Portland Maine Bicycle Commuting Meetup

  9. #9
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    :shrug:

    Anybody who is actually from Florida wish to clarify things here? Last I checked, sggoodrie is from North Carolina. It sounds like there is just this guy from this group who sounded off in the opinion section of the local paper. Is there anything else to this?
    Cat 2 Track, Cat 3 Road.
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  10. #10
    Conservative Hippie
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    I've never heard of Jim Smith or SAFE until recently. The Tallahassee Democrat published a letter to the editor last Monday, written by Mr. Smith, that said essentially the same thing as the article in the OP, advocating for 5' bike lanes and mandatory use of such by cyclists.

    Personally, as a cyclist and a motorist, I think SAFE's position reeks highly of BULL$H!T.

    SAFE's position on lane position:
    SAFE believes that in their best interest, all bicyclists should ride within a designated 5-foot bicycle lane, except when there are obstacles in the bike lane, when safely passing another bicyclist and when making a left turn.
    What the current law actually says:
    Title XXIII MOTOR VEHICLES
    Chapter 316 STATE UNIFORM TRAFFIC CONTROL
    316.2065 Bicycle regulations.--
    (5)(a) Any person operating a bicycle upon a roadway at less than the normal speed of traffic at the time and place and under the conditions then existing shall ride as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway except under any of the following situations:

    1. When overtaking and passing another bicycle or vehicle proceeding in the same direction.

    2. When preparing for a left turn at an intersection or into a private road or driveway.

    3. When reasonably necessary to avoid any condition, including, but not limited to, a fixed or moving object, parked or moving vehicle, bicycle, pedestrian, animal, surface hazard, or substandard-width lane, that makes it unsafe to continue along the right-hand curb or edge. For the purposes of this subsection, a "substandard-width lane" is a lane that is too narrow for a bicycle and another vehicle to travel safely side by side within the lane.

    (b) Any person operating a bicycle upon a one-way highway with two or more marked traffic lanes may ride as near the left-hand curb or edge of such roadway as practicable.
    SAFE plainly wants additional restrictions on cyclists and cycling. SAFE is unnecessary for motorists and unsafe for cyclists.

    I can't even find a website for SAFE. You would think that any kind of advocacy group would have a website to get their position out with a positive spin. I think SAFE is most likely an advocacy "group" of 1 (one).

    Jim Smith, Chairman of SAFE, of Delray Beach, can be reached at jamesejimchar@aol.com, according to the signature in this letter to the editor.
    Last edited by CommuterRun; 02-14-07 at 02:05 PM.

  11. #11
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterRun
    I can't even find a website for SAFE. You would think that any kind of advocacy group would have a website to get their position out with a positive spin. I think SAFE is most likely an advocacy "group" of 1 (one).

    Jim Smith, Chairman of SAFE, of Delray Beach, can be reached at jamesejimchar@aol.com, according to the signature in this letter to the editor.
    Believe you are right Commuter Run about the organizational status of "SAFE". This one man organization/windbag provides a convenient evil totem/strawman for the Henny Penny's to wail and gnash their teeth on the Internet about how "they" are taking away the rights of the High Mileage Road Cyclists throughout the country.

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