The California Bicycle Coalition needs your help to let legislators know how important SB 910 is to the bicycling community. The bill will be up for a full Assembly vote within the next few weeks; one of the final steps before it can become state law. They ask that you contact your local Assembly Member by phone, email, or fax to let them know why this bill is crucial towards advancing road safety for all bicyclists. Join us below the fold to find out how you can help.
The California Bicycle Coalition has provided a standardized format that you can use to contact your Assembly Member to express your support for SB 910. Your voice will definitely make a difference as all messages of support for SB 910 will be documented and accompany the bill as it moves through the legislative process.
The CBC urges that calls and messages be sent by 5 PM Friday, August 26.
Compliments of the California Bicycle Coalition
Call your Assembly Member’s office and leave this message with a staff member or on voicemail:
I live in _____________ and I’m calling to urge Assemblymember _______ to vote yes on Senate Bill 910. By giving drivers clearer guidance on how to pass bicyclists safely, this bill will help save lives and make the roads safer for everyone. Thanks!
By Email or Fax
Copy and paste the sample letter below into an email message or onto your own letterhead, add your name and location, and email it to your Assembly Member by 5pm Friday August 26, 2011.
IMPORTANT! If you or a family member have been involved in a collision or fall in California because a motor vehicle passed too close, briefly summarize the facts in your letter. The information is essential for showing why this law is needed.
Sample Support Letter
Hon. ASSEMBLY MEMBER’S FULL NAME
State Capitol, Room __________
Sacramento, CA 95814
Re: SB 910 (Lowenthal) – SUPPORT
Dear Assembly Member _______________,
I’m a constituent from <<YOU COMMUNITY>> and I’m writing to urge you to vote yes on Senate Bill 910.
Bicyclists too often face dangerous conditions on California’s streets due to motorists passing too closely. When this happens, the slightest error by the motorist or the most minor shift by the bicyclist to avoid trash, broken glass or rough pavement can lead to a collision. This type of collision is the leading cause of adult bicyclist fatalities in California and the U.S.
By requiring motorists to give bicyclists more space when passing, we can minimize a leading cause of deadly collisions and help more people feel comfortable about choosing to ride their bikes.
SB 910 will require motorists to give bicyclists at least 3 feet of space when passing from behind under most circumstances. The bill modifies existing state law that requires a motorist to maintain an unspecified “safe distance” when passing a bicyclist. The California Driver’s Handbook already recommends a 3-foot passing distance for motorists passing bicyclists. Eighteen other states have enacted a specified minimum passing distance for motorists.
A specified passing distance provides a more objective and easily understood measure of what constitutes “safe” and gives law enforcement and the courts a more objective basis for enforcing California’s safe passing requirement. Most importantly, it helps emphasize a motorist’s special responsibility to safeguard more vulnerable road users like bicyclists.
I hope we can count on your support.
<<YOUR CITY, STATE, ZIP>>
CC: Sen. Alan Lowenthal