Wednesday, October 28, 2009

City Council to Meet with ACHD on Bike Safety

Posted By on Wed, Oct 28, 2009 at 7:53 AM

The Boise City Council enthusiastically accepted a report from the city's Bike Safety Task Force Tuesday during its noon meeting, requesting a sit down with the Ada County Highway District, a briefing on ACHD's bike plan and indicating that it would consider implementing many of the suggestions in the report.

Michael Zuzel, with help from police and lawyers, presented the findings of the committee, including suggestions for infrastructure, enforcement and education.

As Zuzel had predicted, the three-feet-to-pass law garnered the most discussion, with Councilman Alan Shealy suggesting that writing "when possible" into the law would give drivers and excuse not to follow it.

"I'm just concerned that 'when possible' is going to completely emasculate the three-feet-to-pass," he said.

In Colorado, drivers are permitted to cross the double yellow line to get around a cyclist, but that would require a change in state law in Idaho, not just city code. The Task Force has been talking to Sen. Elliot Werk about other possible changes to state law that would improve bike safety.

Even among the Council members, the need for bike safety education was apparent. Councilman Vern Bisterfeldt, a former cop, suggested that cyclists used to be told to ride against traffic and cautioned against confusing people too much, particularly the elderly and kids.

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