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Old 09-16-14, 05:11 PM   #1
LGHT
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AB1371 3' Law goes into affect today!!

For all of those riding in California and haven't heard of AB1371 known as the 3' law the law goes into affect today! This is a huge win as for cyclist as police can now ticket vehicles passing unsafely. The law goes into effect as a result of friends and family of Greg Colvin who was struck from behind and killed on PCH in Orange County. Although others have been killed this one got the most attention due to location.

Here is a quick pick of the front page article found in the OC register.


You can also find more info on their site at:

Law on giving cyclists 3 feet of space raises questions - The Orange County Register

Law will give cyclists 3 feet of protection from vehicles - The Orange County Register
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Old 09-16-14, 06:34 PM   #2
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That whooshing sound you hear is motorists not caring or thinking we should be on the sidewalk unless we can ride 50 mph. Now if only somebody eventually gets a ticket for it. I'm not holding my breath.

I have seen some coverage in the news, so that's good.
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Old 09-16-14, 07:09 PM   #3
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That whooshing sound you hear is motorists not caring or thinking we should be on the sidewalk unless we can ride 50 mph. Now if only somebody eventually gets a ticket for it. I'm not holding my breath.

I have seen some coverage in the news, so that's good.
Well I know a few officers with local police force and 1 in the city of Orange said it was mentioned in a "briefing". Not sure if they will be targeting people, but in my area that's happens to be very bike friendly (and very low crime) I'm sure it's just another reason to give a driver a ticket that they will more likely be glad to fund the ball with. So hopefully they will get the word out.
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Old 09-17-14, 09:38 AM   #4
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They'll be handing out a lot of warnings before tickets. I can imagine the average motorist has no idea about the law and cops will be lenient. I also don't expect lapd, Glendale or burbank cops where I ride to stop someone specifically for this because they have so much else to deal with. If person is doing 60 in a 30 and they get pulled over I can see cops tacking this on if they can
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Old 09-17-14, 10:16 AM   #5
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We have had it here in Oklahoma for about a year now. Made no difference what so ever. Hopefully it works out better for the cyclists in California.
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Old 09-17-14, 10:55 AM   #6
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I suspect the law will be handled exactly like the cell phone usage laws... no one, including PD, will care. Politicians just signing into law more "feel good" laws that have no meaning. Instead of this and the "high speed to nowhere train" money and time would be better spent designing bike trails... taking bicycles off the street altogether.
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Old 09-17-14, 11:03 AM   #7
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no one, including PD, will care.
A traffic stop is usually for speeding, swerving, looking suspicious, or running into something. The cops then have the opportunity to throw the book at the driver, and then whittle off a few charges to make it seem like they're doing the perp a favor. Count in this seat belt laws, cell phone laws, DUI with a minor passenger, open container, posession, show of speed & reckless driving, etc etc. It extends beyond driving too - how often does anyone get cited for having a dog leash that was too long? Not until the dog bites someone.

I sometimes wonder if traffic enforcement was just invented to give cops something to do while they wait for a real emergency.
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Old 09-17-14, 11:06 AM   #8
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I did notice the one driver that I interacted with today didn't seem to know what to do with me. I was taking the lane to go straight ahead at a place where most traffic turns right. I waved her up but she trailed me anyhow. She must have heard about it on the radio.
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Old 09-17-14, 02:36 PM   #9
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Yeah I doubt most cities will bother doing anything, and quit a few other states already have a law, but it is a start. I for one know the city of Irvine is taking it very serious. They even released a 2 min safety video on their FB page explaining the law and how it works. https://www.facebook.com/IrvinePD It's a pretty basic video, but it shows how much free time they have to actually go out in the city and film several people bike riding just to make a 2 min video.... I wouldn't be surprised if they already started giving out tickets just to say they did.
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Old 09-17-14, 02:53 PM   #10
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I for one know the city of Irvine is taking it very serious. They even released a 2 min safety video on their FB page explaining the law and how it works. https://www.facebook.com/IrvinePD
Irvine is probably in the top-2 cities in Southern California as far as wide & plentiful bike lanes go. This'll be a piece of cake for them.
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Old 09-17-14, 03:13 PM   #11
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Step in the right direction, but don't be any less careful out there, the drivers that don't give a sh@t won't give a sh@t. Oh. Hello everyone.
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Old 09-17-14, 03:16 PM   #12
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Step in the right direction, but don't be any less careful out there, the drivers that don't give a sh@t won't give a sh@t. Oh. Hello everyone.
Good point and I totally agree. One of the reasons why I try and avoid streets if at all possible and stay on the trails. If I must ride a street I try and do so on lanes that have very wide and frequent bike paths.
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Old 09-19-14, 12:22 PM   #13
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Yesterday as I rode away from a stop light two guys felt a need to impress each other with the size of their anatomy. Both passed me at full throttle definitely less than three feet away.

Earlier today a driver apparently thought "Share the Road" meant she could drive her car in the bike lane. That one was too close for comfort.

In other words... nothing has changed.
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Old 09-19-14, 12:53 PM   #14
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I suspect the law will be handled exactly like the cell phone usage laws... no one, including PD, will care.
Pennsylvania's 4' (Ye.s Four feet.) law has been in effect for well over a year now and I think it has definitely made some difference. While it has been in effect I have taken two tours across the state. I have noticed many more people going WAY wide to pass me. I have noticed the same thing locally, at least in the 'burbs. (In many parts of the city the streets are so narrow that it's simply not possible to give a cyclist 4' when passing.)

Has it affected the behavior of everyone? Of course not. No law on any subject will reach everyone. Some people simply don't know about it. I have actually caught up to people at lights and in parking lots and clued them in after they buzzed me. Others will obey if doing doesn't mean they have to slow down. (The way it works in PA is that if you cannot give 4' without endangering oncoming traffic you have to wait until it's safe to pull out and go around." On my most recent tour, which ended on Sunday, some people gave me some room, but not the required 4', because of oncoming traffic. Still others just don't care.

In PA, I believe the fine violating the law is pretty low. Not much of a deterrent. I believe the bigger deterrent lies in the potential for civil liability. If you hit a lawfully riding cyclist while passing him or her you clearly haven't given the minimum clearence. That's terrfic grounds for being found liable for any resultant injury. Up goes your auto insurance rates for a while, and maybe you get a judgment slapped against you. I am sure many people find that much more of a deterrent than, say, a one-time fine of even $100.
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Old 09-19-14, 03:51 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Pamestique View Post
I suspect the law will be handled exactly like the cell phone usage laws... no one, including PD, will care. Politicians just signing into law more "feel good" laws that have no meaning. Instead of this and the "high speed to nowhere train" money and time would be better spent designing bike trails... taking bicycles off the street altogether.
+1000

Perfect example.
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