Plan allowing bikes to cruise through intersections is idling

A proposal that would allow California bicyclists to legally roll through stop signs and run red lights after halting is in limbo after its first hearing.

The Metropolitan Transportation Commission is considering pursuing state legislation that would change the California vehicle code to allow bicyclists to treat stop signs as yield signs, and interpret stoplights as stop signs. Those rules already are in place in Idaho, and Oregon legislators tried to pass the laws in 2003 to no avail.

During the first hearing on the topic Thursday, the MTC’s Regional Bicycle Working Group did not kill the idea, nor did it propose the agency’s governing board consider it for approval, which could lead to state legislation, said MTC spokesman Randy Rentschler.

The agency’s staff will further investigate the topic, Rentschler said.

Drivers and law enforcement had voiced strong opposition to the idea, citing a sense of bicyclist entitlement and the unfair advantages it would provide bike riders.

“What happens if a poor innocent driver or even someone who’s walking has the green light and the bicyclist flies on through?” San Franciscan Ann Dolyniuk said. “Somebody’s going to get hurt.”

Bicyclists, meanwhile, supported the idea, saying it is difficult to pedal from a dead stop and arguing that the law changes would improve traffic flow.

“I think it would improve the situation for bicyclists, and it would encourage more people to ride,” SanFrancisco bicyclist Kathleen McNamara said.

mrosenberg@sfexaminer.com  

Bay Area NewsLocalTransittransportation

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

SFPD Officer Nicholas M. Buckley is shown here after a use-of-force incident in November 2014 (DPA records)
SF police return officer to patrol despite false testimony

A San Francisco police officer accused of fabricating a reason for arresting… Continue reading

A nurse draws up a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at the Mission neighborhood COVID-19 vaccine site on Monday, Feb. 1, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SF expands vaccine eligiblity, but appointments ‘limited’

San Francisco expanded eligibility for COVID-19 vaccinations Wednesday but appointments remain limited… Continue reading

The now-shuttered Cliff House restaurant overlooks Ocean Beach people at Ocean Beach on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. (Sebastian Miño-Bucheli / Special to the S.F. Examiner)
History buffs working to keep Cliff House collection in public view

Funds needed to buy up historic building’s contents at auction

Perceived supply and demand in the Bay Area’s expensive rental market can play a big part in determining what people pay. (Shutterstock)
Bay Area rental market rebound — why?

Hearing about people leaving town can have as big an effect as actual economic factors

AC/DC guitarist Angus Young, center, says the band has been “lucky” throughout its long career. <ins>(Courtesy Josh Cheuse)</ins>
AC/DC’s Angus Young: We ‘keep it basic’

Rockers’ 17th album is ‘Power Up’

Most Read