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-   -   Georgia law: most recuments are not road legal (https://www.bikeforums.net/recumbent/98477-georgia-law-most-recuments-not-road-legal.html)

JohnCub 04-09-05 06:24 PM

Georgia law: most recuments are not road legal
 
I've been getting my bike ready for a partial commute to work and really trying to make sure I have all my bases covered. I decided to check out Georgia's laws, since I'm not native to Georgia and I thought it would be a good idea to have that base covered as well. I got my information from http://www.serve.com/bike/georgia/galaw.html which is where http://www.massbike.org/bikelaw/bikelaw.htm also links to.



40-6-296(d) No bicycle shall be equipped, modified, or altered in such a way as to cause the pedal in its lowermost position to be more than 12 inches above the ground, nor shall any bicycle be operated if so equipped.
I guess the low racers would be legal but I'm quite certain the lowermost position of my pedal is well above 12" above the ground.

This won't stop me from at least attempting to commute and it sure isn't going to stop me from riding for pleasure. I'm just wondering if anyone can come up with a logical explanation of why this law would be in effect.

Bikewer 04-09-05 06:28 PM

Hard to say for sure, but perhaps to keep folks from riding "giraffe" or other stunt bikes on the road.

I'll wager you'll have a hard time finding a police officer who ever heard of this provision, much less one who would write a citation for it.

bcspain 04-09-05 07:13 PM

Sounds to me like some politician owned a bike shop that only sold DF's!

Wouldn't be the first time a law got passed to suit someone's personal preferences. A few years ago a state law got passed here that it was illegal to allow Canadian thistles to grow and flourish on rural land. Like anyone could contain the damned things any way, but the law only applied in ONE county. So what to do? Only thing we could....get the stupid law repealed.

If it becomes a problem, and I doubt that it would, you may have to go on a campaign to get it changed. I can't imagine any officer pulling a bike over and measuring it. Surely they got better things to do.

Trsnrtr 04-09-05 07:22 PM


Originally Posted by bcspain
Wouldn't be the first time a law got passed to suit someone's personal preferences. A few years ago a state law got passed here that it was illegal to allow Canadian thistles to grow and flourish on rural land.

The Canadian Thistle is considered a noxious weed in Illinois and I assume in many other farming states. I have heard of the law being enforced in my area. It's a very old law.

Given all that, I still understand your point.

bcspain 04-09-05 07:48 PM


Originally Posted by Trsnrtr
The Canadian Thistle is considered a noxious weed in Illinois and I assume in many other farming states. I have heard of the law being enforced in my area. It's a very old law.

Given all that, I still understand your point.


You get no argument from me there, it's a royal pain in the ass. They will kill the grass around them, they hurt like hell if you step on or fall off your bike on one, and will grow in places that no other plant life will even try and a single bloom produces hundreds of seeds! If we could learn to eat them, there'd never be a famine again but not even cows or goats will eat them. I have 40 acres, and if I spent every Saturday from now till doomsday chopping and spraying them, I still wouldn't get it done. But to put in a state law for ONE county? To make matters worse, state and federal land was exempt from this silly law. When the bloody things go to seed, anyone down wind gets a new dose. Remember the line "away they all flew like the down of a thisle"? If you ever wondered what that means, find one this summer, throw a rock at the seed pod when its a little breezy and you'll see!

Trouble is, nature seldom respects man's law, and pretty well does as she pleases. That would be like trying to outlaw hurricanes!

Climbing down off my soap box now. Didn't mean to deliver a sermon there.

It was 76 degrees when I got off work at 2 this afternoon, blue skies, light breeze, so my wife and I jumped on the tandem and put some highway behind us. Any one else go riding today?

MrEWorm 04-09-05 09:34 PM

I like to sit wand watch the goldfinches feed on the thistle flowers. Thats about all the good that the thistle does, but it is neat.

AlphaGeek 04-11-05 10:36 AM

[QUOTE=JohnCub... but I'm quite certain the lowermost position of my pedal is well above 12" above the ground.

This won't stop me from at least attempting to commute and it sure isn't going to stop me from riding for pleasure..[/QUOTE]

Well John, there are at least two of us Georgia renegades on the road! :beer:

What kind of whack came up with this law?

bentrox! 04-11-05 03:20 PM

Does the statute in Georgia define what a bicycle is? If not or if it's ambiguous, couldn't you just refer to the U.C.I. for a definitive description (which clearly leaves out recumbents as bicycles?) I believe it's something that restricts the fore-and-aft distance of seat-to-bottom bracket, among other limitations.
If your bent is not a bicycle, the law wouldn't apply, would it?

JohnCub 04-11-05 05:58 PM

I've been looking and I can't find a legal definition in the law anywhere. I did find the full text of the law though, at http://www.legis.state.ga.us/cgi-bin...?code=40-6-290

Slo Joe Recumbo 04-12-05 12:11 AM

Hi John,

That's not unusual since most laws were written when there were only DF style bikes. So that provision was probably written with some kind of safety thought in mind. There's a similar law in NJ where I used to live. LAB has a link to all state laws.

Does GA have a state bike advocate? If so, write to that person explaining the change in bicycles and that the law has to be updated.

In the meantime, have fun.

richardmasoner 04-12-05 12:19 AM


Originally Posted by AlphaGeek
What kind of whack came up with this law?

I would imagine this law was probably written with the penny farthing in mind. It probably wouldn't be too difficult to look up the history of this law. In Colorado (where I live) the legislative history of our statutes is available online.

RFM

BentandFolded 04-12-05 04:56 PM


Originally Posted by richardmasoner
I would imagine this law was probably written with the penny farthing in mind. It probably wouldn't be too difficult to look up the history of this law. In Colorado (where I live) the legislative history of our statutes is available online.

RFM

That must be an entertaining read!


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