safe passing ordonance approved

” […] the [San Antonio City]  council approved the new road rules, which require motorists to change lanes when passing a cyclist, pedestrian or other “vulnerable road user.” If changing lanes isn’t possible, and if conditions allow, drivers must give three feet of clearance when they pass.

The city will launch an education campaign this spring to emphasize to San Antonio drivers they legally have to share the road with users who’ll always lose in a collision with 2,000 pounds of steel.

The council OK’d the same version of the rules passed by the Legislature last year, a measure that took 10 years to craft and garnered widespread bipartisan support.”

quoted from the San Antonio Express-News


Even if that’s a long overdue measure, I really doubt if it’s going to help very much. On the one hand, who’s really going to enforce it? As the Express-News reported the other day, drivers disobeying will not be cited unless there is a law-enforcement officers present watching the incident. And then, three feet is certainly not enough in many circumstances. And considering the overwhelming number of irresponsible comments as to the various reports on this matter in the news, I really don’t think passing this ordinance will change an iota in the behaviour of motorists – and of bicyclist, at that. Let’s face it: there are irresponsible people on either side of the spectrum. But, and that’s the up-beat, the irresponsible drivers and bicyclists are an absolute minority. And what I’m actually really afraid of when I’m on my bike is not those drivers who yell and/or honk at me, because that means they have seen me, but those who – for various reasons [maybe they’re texting or on their cell phones, maybe they’re just having a sip of drink, maybe they’re simply alseep at the wheel or as blind as a bat and still driving] – do not see me at all. What we actually need is better education for both drivers and bicyclists. And, starting with bicyclists, those measures being taken up by schools now to get more children on bikes [see my posting on that and cf. here and here] are excellent as these are the future drivers and hopefully they’ll be more bicyclist-friendly then. But then, also, a real working law enforcement would, of course, help to eliminate the few rotten apples in the barrel of good drivers. The opinion expressed by the SAPD, that relieving officers from  issuing tickets would free them for more patrol duty is callous, to say the least. Or would anybody say they should not pursue a burglar, e.g., so as to be able to patrol the streets more?


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Filed under in the news, laws & ordinances, San Antonio, San Antonio Express-News, Texas

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