Legal protection needed for cyclists

Published 10:08 pm Thursday, July 17, 2014

To the editor:

So far this year, Virginia has seen eight people die and 600 injured in car-bike collisions. Virginia laws are not doing enough to protect the safety of cyclists on the road.

However, we have seen positive change in one area. On July 1, a new law took effect to make our roads safer for cyclists. Sen. Bryce Reeves carried and championed a bill to increase the room drivers must give when passing cyclists from two feet to three feet — or risk court costs, fines and points.

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I want to commend Senator Reeves for his effective representation on commonsense laws such as these, which protect citizens in our commonwealth.

I hope this coming year we can also change a ridiculous hole in Virginia law that excludes legal protection for cyclists from being tailgated and pass another law that requires a motorist to look and be sure that no one is coming before opening their door into traffic. (Bicyclists and motorcyclists are often injured or killed by this irresponsible act.)

We will make these improvements if legislators follow the commonsense lead of Sen. Bryce Reeves.

Stan Huie