In New York and Delaware, vulnerable user laws impose tougher penalties for motorists who strike and injure bicyclists, pedestrians, roadway workers and others specified in the statute. Penalties vary from state to state, but typically carry fines up to $1,000 and require violators to complete traffic safety courses.
Hardman said the members of the Bicycle Federation have been talking to legislators, seeking sponsors for a bill in the state.
First, I admit that it’s a pet peeve of mine that so many cyclists want it both ways. For every cyclist I see on the road following the rules, I see 10 blow through a stop sign, fail to signal, or fail to obey any number of traffic laws. I know some very safe cyclists who ride defensively and obey the rules of the road, but they are a distinct minority.
Second, by virtue of the fact that a cyclist is on a vehicle that has no protective cage and weighs 50 times less than a lot of the vehicles on the road, I don’t think that motorists should be penalized more severely when things go tragically wrong. If all of the vehicles are sharing the road equally, then people should be treated equal for equal offenses. If a driver runs a stop sign and hits a cyclist, there’s no reason he should be punished more severely than if he hit a Focus… or a motorcycle… or a semi. It’s the same crime and deserves the same punishment.
I used to race bikes when I was younger, and I’d say that 99% of the bike riders I see on the street openly flaunt most rules of the road, and even the most basic safe practices. I’m constantly having to ride on the wrong side of the road, because a bunch of bike riders think it is fine to ride three accross taking up one entire side of a county highway.
I agree….bike riders share the same road, with the same rules, and should not be singled out for added benefits. If anything, I think that the instead we should be enforcing the road rules for them too. Enforcing safe riding habits would save FAR more lives than punishing someone unfortunate enough to run over one of these idiots.
As a biker I agree with Curt. i see groups who are out in their Saturday morning ride group and they act like they own where ever they are. From road to the stops they make for a cup of coffee. They are really just rude.
This law is ridiculus. Nobody is trying to hit a bike. (Although some bikers seem like they are trying to get hit. ) Making the punishment harsher for someone who does hit a bike is not going to prevent this. A much better solution would be to make the bikers take a training class and require them to get a bike riding lic. But I am sure in the liberial world we live with the bikes good cars bad mentality this will never happen.
I’d still make an exception for people who “door” a bicyclist (whether they’re the driver or not). Just because it’s a dumb thoughtless thing to do.
But I could still do with less “attitude” from (some) bicyclists- really, you’re not morally superior just because you’re cranking.
If all of the vehicles are sharing the road equally, then people should be treated equal for equal offenses.
No - when bikers are injured, clearly a more severe punishment is in order. It’s a hate crime against bikers, plain and simple. We should be punishing thoughts and reasons, not actions.
“I’m constantly having to ride on the wrong side of the road, because a bunch of bike riders think it is fine to ride three accross taking up one entire side of a county highway.”
Bikers ARE allowed to ride three accross on county highways as long as they are not impeding traffic. The CORRECT way to pass on a county highway is to go into the oncoming lane while the dividing line is dotted.
While I agree that a lot of cyclists don’t follow the rules of the road, I’m not going to pretend that idiot rednecks aren’t a problem. I’m not sure if this is the proper solution, though. The best places to ride are out on county highways, and there really are lots of dumbasses out there driving around in pickup trucks that think it’s hilarious to pass way too close, honk their horns and do tons of other crap like that.
I think making the punishment stiffer if you hit a bicyclist is just plan insane. It would be hard for me to count the number of times I have almost run into a cyclist that deemed that the “rules of the road” don’t apply to them. Usually these are younger people who can and do give you the “one finger salute” because they know that you can’t beat the crap out of them. But if you injure them for their bad judgement you should be punished more. Don’t see the logic here.
I also ride a motorcycle and know that some drivers just don’t give a darn about someone “on two wheels”. As an ex-truck driver with almost 2 million miles under my belt I can tell you that you don’t have a long career if you are unsafe. You also do not have a long career if you are not paying attention to all the other idiots that share the road with you.
But I still think it is wrong to put extra punishment one group as this will only breed more “bad behavior” by those that will think and use this law change to “win the lawyer lottery” to an easy ticket to “extra cash above and beyond” what is normal for all others sharing the road
Dang typo’s - 2nd to last line in 1st paragraph “But if you injure them for their bad judgement you should be punished more” should have been But if you injure them for their bad judgement you should be <not> punished more”. Oops!