Give them some space, 3 foot bicycle law goes into effect

Three Foot Bike Passing Law Goes Into Effect

DAYTON (WKEF/WRGT)-- A new law that went into effect Tuesday, March 21st is all about creating a safe space for bicyclists on roads. Think of a yardstick the next time you're about to pass a bicycle. Three feet is the new minimum distance to go around anyone riding in the road.

Chuck Smith has loved cycling his whole life. Smith is one of the people who pushed to get the bike buffer zone bill passed for the last eight years.

"It's definitely sorely needed. (Bicyclists) need space. Otherwise bad things happen and we definitely need that space," Smith, who is the Chair of the Ohio Bicycle Federation, said.

Not everywhere has well marked bike lanes like Brown St. near UD. Often times there are just signs to “share the road” and sometimes no signs at all.

This new law says you have to give at least three feet whenever you pass a bicycle on the road.

"Vehicles nee to provide the proper space from each other. You don't see cars getting within three feet of each other or trucks so they should give us at least three feet," Smith said.

Bike activists hope the new law will educate drivers about how to treat cyclists.

"It is a needed law and like I said, we do still need some education but yeah I think it's a positive step in the right direction, " Bud Bell, with the Dayton Cycling Club, said.

Bell says he's been lucky and never had any serious crashes when on two wheels.

"Other people I've ridden with have. People have gotten hit. Things have happened. We've had a few members who have been killed by motorists," Bell said.

If you get caught passing too closely, you can receive a misdemeanor ticket with a different price tag depending on where you get it.

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