Saturday, February 8, 2014

Bicycle Safety--Media focus on 3 ft. minimum law

Updated 2/28/14
Bike/Ped safety continues to be a front and center issue.  This post includes update on 2014 fatality numbers, includes the excellent NBC-2 investigative report on bike safety, focusing on the 3 ft. minimum passing law, and actions in Naples to address biking safety; and the WINK News report focusing on the 3 ft. minimum law.  Naples holds its first bike/ped safety task force meeting on March 1st and Lee County holds its second meeting with law enforcement on March 14th.  We'll keep you updated on all safety developments.

Safety by the numbers....We're now two months into 2014, and to date, Lee County has had one pedestrian fatality (in January on SR 80 at Royal Palm Park Rd.) and one bicyclist fatality (Feb. 23rd, Ben Hill Griffin Parkway).  Given our terrible stats for 2013 (25 pedestrian and 4 bike fatalities), we're closely watching 2014 numbers, so stay tuned. Please, everyone, be careful out there!

Media Reports:

NBC2 Investigators: Bicycle accidents in Southwest Florida
Posted: Feb 06, 2014 7:53 PM EST Updated: Feb 06, 2014 7:56 PM EST
By Jim Spiewak 

On Feb. 6th, NBC-2 aired an investigative report about bike crashes and the 3 ft. law--3 tickets in 3 years in 3 counties isn't much!  Thanks to NBC-2 News for educating the public, and to Dan Moser, Steve Rodgers and FHP's Greg Bueno for their on-camera interviews. WBBH News for Fort Myers, Cape Coral

WINK News 2/25/14:  Florida law works to help keep bicyclist safe on the roadway

On Feb. 25th, WINK News included story on bike safety, with focus on getting motorists to follow the 3 ft. minimum rule. The WINK reporter attended this morning's joint Lee/Collier MPO bike/ped committee meeting and interviewed Joe Bonness, who's a Collier County committee member and on the Naples Pathways Coalition Board. Great job, Joe...and thanks to WINK for helping spread the safety message.

Watch the excellent WINK video story.

Bike Safety News from Naples:

March 1st "Share the Road" Safety Expo

 Naples Task Force on Bicyclist and pedestrian safety (Feb. 3rd)
The wheels are in motion for a new task force on bicyclist and pedestrian safety following a crash last week in Naples that sent a bicyclist to the hospital.
The nine-person task force will be known as Turning Point, said Patrick Ruff, president of the Naples Pathways Coalition. Plans are underway for an upcoming rally to bring together bicyclists, runners, law enforcement and drivers.

“The primary purpose will be to direct the energy from the incident into the community so there’s more awareness,” Ruff said.

Important message to cyclists from Naples Velo: "We must respect what we expect others to respect..If we expect motorists to respect our rights as cyclists and to drive lawfully, we too must respect all rules of the road...and in particular, respecting all stop signs and red lights."

On last week's  organized cycling ride in Naples, a frustrated motorist sped past a group of riders and severely injured the lead rider, Chuck Kelly. The cycling and running community in Naples issued a unified response to the incident and a call to action, working towards a civil and safe community. We wish Chuck a speedy recovery.

With season upon us, bike/ped safety is front and's Naples Daily News article about issues in Collier County, with several quotes from BikeWalkLee's Dan Moser.

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