New 3-Foot Bike-Passing Law Great News for Rest of New York

11/17/2009 4:44 PM |

bike distance bill

Assemblywoman Amy Paulin of New York’s 88th district (White Plains, Bronxville, New Rochelle and thereabouts) has introduced a bill that would require motorists to keep a minimum distance of 3 feet while passing cyclists. Amazingly, most states have no specific law on the matter, but for the few that do 3 feet is pretty much the standard. Paulin is introducing the safe passing bill after bike activist Merrill Cassell died last week under the wheels of a bus that was overtaking him.

Of course, this is a great law for cyclists who ride outside the city, but let’s be realistic: no driver’s gonna give up 3 feet of space on a New York City street, not to a car, not to a bicycle, not even to their own mother. Really, we just need more bike lanes (to be employed in the correct direction, of course). Still, it’s nice to know that people with actual political power give a damn about cyclists at all.

One Comment

  • Sorry, but politicians that pass laws that are not realistic and certainly not enforceable do none of us any favors. What’s the saying- the road to hell is paved with good intentions?
    Now, if she can get entire streets dedicated solely to bikes, skates, Segways, then we’re talking. I don’t even use any of these but would be more than happy to see it happen.