Friday, February 9, 2007

A big news day...

I was perusing my regular haunts I came across this little jewel that is definitely worth passing on. I feel this bill is important on so many levels. As a recreational cyclist and cycling commuter I think this can save lives, and help lead the way to tougher punishments against those who negligently, and needlessly, injure and kill cyclist.

When the public safety version of this bill (SB 545.157) passed I was glad and thought it should have been done years ago. In the 15 years I've been in the Fire and EMS world, I've had more than my share of close calls with inattentive drivers and cars that carelessly passed too closely. Once they get inside that car they seem to disconnect themselves from the outside world with little thought to how dangerous their actions can be. I don't understand it.

Anyway, if you are a cyclist around here, or know a cyclist... support this bill. If it makes just one driver more aware of their actions, the life it saves could be your own.



SB248: Senate Transportation Committee Hearing Feb. 14!!

SB248, the Safe Passing Bill, which was authored by Senator Rodney Ellis, will be presented to the Senate Transportation Committee on Wednesday, February 14. We are working to present our case and need help from constituents in the districts of the Senate Transportation Committee members.

With the Senate Transportation Committee Hearing approaching next week, it is urgent that you contact your SENATOR if he/she is on the Senate Transportation Committee. The Senate Transportation Committee members are: Senate District 2 - Senator Bob Deuell (R), Senate District 3 - Senator Robert Nichols (R), Senate District 4 - Senator Tommy Williams (R), Senate District 8 - Senator Florence Shapiro (R), Senate District 10 - Senator Kim Brimer (R), Senate District 13 - Senator Rodney Ellis (D), Senate District 14 - Senator Kirk Watson (D), Senate District 16 - Senator John Carona (R), Senate District 25 - Senator Jeff Wentworth (R), Senate District 29 - Senator Eliot Shapleigh (D).

If you are not sure who your state senator is, follow this link: http://www.fyi.legis.state.tx.us/ and enter your address to find out who represents you.

Please send a letter and contact your Senator if you live in his/her district to show your support of the Safe Passing Bill. This is the most important legislation for cyclists in Texas' history. We will be protecting the lives of cyclists throughout the state.

SB248: The Safe Passing Bill
The Safe Passing Bill would require a motorist to give at least three feet of clearance when passing a bicyclist and would require a commercial vehicle to give at least six feet of clearance when passing a bicyclist.

Approximately 50 cyclists per year are killed in bicycle-automobile crashes in Texas. About 40% of those are killed by motorists traveling in the same direction. Most of those 20 deaths per year could be prevented if this law were enacted and obeyed by motorists.

The Safe Passing Law, modeled on the Move Over Act (for emergency vehicles) which passed in the 2003 Texas legislative session, simplifies the punishment issues and provides a clear framework for identifying the obligations of a passing motorist to either move over or slow down when passing a cyclist. With this law, the vision of "Share the Road" can be fully realized.
Learn more...

Texas Bicycle Coalition
The Texas Bicycle Coalition is continually working to advance bicycle access, safety, and education for the state of Texas.

Website: http://www.BikeTexas.org/

Texas Bicycle Coalition
Robin Stallings
Executive Director
email: advocacy@biketexas.org
phone: 512-476-7433 Texas Bicycle Coalition
Kristina Gaboury
Membership Director
email: membership@biketexas.org
phone: 512-476-7433

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