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Tell the Senate that bikes have a right to the road
The draft of the Senate's transportation authorization bill, S. 1813 Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act, includes language that would introduce a mandatory sidepath law on roads in our National Parks and other Federal lands. It requires cyclists on Federal lands to use a path or trail, instead of roads, if the speed limit is over 30 MPH and a trail exists within 100 yards, regardless of its condition or utility of the path. The provision sets a terrible precedent. Passing it would send the wrong message to transportation agencies that these policies are acceptable. Laws like this have been taken off the books in states over the past 30 years. This takes us in the wrong direction.
For more information, read Andy Clarke's blog post.
The League is working on many other aspects of the transportation reauthorization bill. This petition relates specifically to the mandatory sidepath law, which we felt deserved special attention. Stay tuned for news and action alerts related to this and other aspects of this critical legislation.
Please join us in telling the Senate that the mandatory sidepath law is a bad idea -
We ask you to remove the mandatory sidepath language (Section § 203 (d)) from the transportation authorization bill, S. 1813 Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act. The law unfairly and unreasonably restricts cycling at a time when we should be encouraging bicycling for transportation, health, recreation, air quality and a host of other reasons.
Clemson Smith Muniz
“I am a bike commuter - I bike to work every day, 6-miles each way, to save money and gas, and also to get in a healthy amount of exercise. The passage of this law would make it impossible for me to do this any longer. I would have to spend more money for my car, for parking, and I would end up obese because I have neither the time for working out otherwise, nor the money for a gym membership. This clause is counter-intuitive and damaging to people like me who use a bike as an alternative form of (more healthy) transportation. ”
“National parks have been home to shared roads between motorists, cyclists, and other users for decades. Cycling on many roads in national parks and other federal lands is a key part of the recreational value of those lands. This provision sends the wrong message on bike safety, its intent being independent of the safety of the road in question, which could encourage even more bad policy in the future, as well as reduce the optimal use of our public lands. REMOVE THIS LANGUAGE NOW!”
“It amazes me that the very demographic responsible for the first paved roads in America are being told to use sidewalks. Never mind arguments over how wonderful bikes are for the environment, oil consumption, etc. Bikes don't kill 40,000 Americans per year. If you want to legislate safety, restrict Auto travel.”
“Like all transportation, bicycles depend on the robustness of their networks. This reduces the network and sets a very bad precedent for the rest of the nation. ”
“Bikes are vehicles and bikers are not third-class citizens. ”
“An unmaintainedp path or soft dirt path for a narrow tire bike can be far more dangerous than the road”
“Give us a real shoulder not the cold shoulder. I vote ”
“Safety of cyclists must be a national concern.”
“Most of the "bike" paths are actually walking paths. This creates a VERY dangerous situation. I have not only witnessed many accidents on these paths but was in one myself on a dangerous sandy curve and broke my pelvis. This accident would never have occured if I wasn't trying to stay in my lane on the narrow multi-use path trying to avoid others. I will now suffer with pain in my hip and back for the rest of my life and have avoided multi-use paths ever since. Please don't subject others to the same fate. We should be encouraging more bikes and less cars, not forcing cyclists to drive because the paths to work are too dangerous to ride.”