Everyone Deserves Road Access

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I have been a resident for 40 years and ride my bike three days a week. I have been knocked down by an inattentive driver.

I couldn’t disagree more with Dave Connell (“Bike Fun for Some Impinges on Others,” Letters, Sept. 26). He points out that this has to do with “political correctness or environmental extremism”. This is a public safety issue.

Laguna has a unique place as road cyclists ride through our town on the Coast Highway or through our canyon as the only real connection to other cities. Cyclists know that it is one of the most dangerous places to ride. Mountain bikers use the streets as well to get to our world-class cycling parks. Many of these people live, eat, stay as visitors here in our town. We should protect them with the new rules. It is no different a safety issue than having lifeguards at our beaches.

The State of California has always had laws on the books about the right of cyclists to use the road. The recent addition of CVC 21760 or “the three foot rule” is a step in the right direction. Mr. Connell should check his facts about whether it is okay for cyclists to ride in “herds”. CVC 21650 states that cyclists are not required to ride in single file. CVC 21703, which rules on “following to close,” does not apply to cyclists, and we are specifically exempt from this so we can “draft”. CVC 21656 allows cyclists to use more of the road when it is unsafe to stay to the right. I do not condone the riding at night without lights, running stop signs or lights, as this is unsafe whether as a cyclist or driver of an automobile.

The roads are more crowded with cars, motorcycles, bicyclist, and pedestrians. Most of the cyclist vs. automobile accidents are caused by inattentive drivers. Shocking since the advent of the mobile phone.

We have to learn to share the road with every one on it. Everyone is initialed to use the road within the rules. Mr. Connell points out that maybe we should tax cyclists. Well how about we tax pedestrians too? I am sure that the days that I drive my gasoline powered car entitles me to use the road how I like, walking across the street or riding my bike down it, since my taxes on fuels too pays for the road.

 

Robert Shaw, Laguna Beach

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