The Chainlink

My apologies if this has already been posted, but I searched for it and couldn't find it. Is there any way to see how many citations have been issued to motor vehicle operators for violation of the 3-foot law?

 

I would like to know, because especially now that the city council is looking at additional laws on cyclists (specifically, the cell phone law) I wonder how often laws designed to *protect* cyclists are enforced. My guess is, not often.

 

Any thoughts?

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I also wish I knew these laws are being enforced, but just like the cell phone while driving laws are also ignored this one must be as well.
Quite frankly, of the towns I ride in the burbs, I don't think the police departments are even aware of the 3' rule....They include most of the inner west burbs.
I hate to be negative about this, but is the 3 foot rule realistic in the least?  I mean, if you try to ride outside the door zone (3 feet from cars or so) AND take the 3 foot rule seriously (3 feet plus 1.5 foot to account for the cyclist) then that demands a bike space of about 7 to 8 feet.  I like the idea of having that much space, but crying foul over it just seems a bit ridiculous.
That means the bike lanes are inadequate, not that we shouldn't be passed at a safe distance.  It is not safe or comfortable being passed within a foot like so often happens.

Joe TV said:
I hate to be negative about this, but is the 3 foot rule realistic in the least?  I mean, if you try to ride outside the door zone (3 feet from cars or so) AND take the 3 foot rule seriously (3 feet plus 1.5 foot to account for the cyclist) then that demands a bike space of about 7 to 8 feet.  I like the idea of having that much space, but crying foul over it just seems a bit ridiculous.
Joe, that sounds like a perfectly reasonable, intelligent assessment of real world conditions. Make sure it doesn't happen again.

Joe TV said:
I hate to be negative about this, but is the 3 foot rule realistic in the least?  I mean, if you try to ride outside the door zone (3 feet from cars or so) AND take the 3 foot rule seriously (3 feet plus 1.5 foot to account for the cyclist) then that demands a bike space of about 7 to 8 feet.  I like the idea of having that much space, but crying foul over it just seems a bit ridiculous.

I do drive a car as well as bike, and I don't have any problem obeying the 3-foot law. Sometimes it means I have to swerve into the lane to the left of me, sometimes it means there's not enough room for me to lawfully pass, so I slow down and stay behind the cyclist until it's safe and lawful to do so. It's not really that hard to obey the law, and it makes a big difference to the guy or gal on two wheels to my right.

Anyway, we're not legally entitled to a 3-foot door zone buffer, but we are entitled to have cars pass us safely.


Joe TV said:

I hate to be negative about this, but is the 3 foot rule realistic in the least?  I mean, if you try to ride outside the door zone (3 feet from cars or so) AND take the 3 foot rule seriously (3 feet plus 1.5 foot to account for the cyclist) then that demands a bike space of about 7 to 8 feet.  I like the idea of having that much space, but crying foul over it just seems a bit ridiculous.

+1.

 

And there are often large gaps in the parked cars, a couple hundred feet, where the biker can move into the door zone allowing the patient driver behind ample room to pass. Traffic is a cooperative activity!

 

As such, going down Milwaukee, I typically just make cars wait behind me. Tight squeeze.

Will V. said:

I do drive a car as well as bike, and I don't have any problem obeying the 3-foot law. Sometimes it means I have to swerve into the lane to the left of me, sometimes it means there's not enough room for me to lawfully pass, so I slow down and stay behind the cyclist until it's safe and lawful to do so. It's not really that hard to obey the law, and it makes a big difference to the guy or gal on two wheels to my right.

Anyway, we're not legally entitled to a 3-foot door zone buffer, but we are entitled to have cars pass us safely.

Will, the Trib did a FOIA request on this:

 

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-03-20/classified/ct-met-get...

 

Basically, almost none...

 

Is it just me or am I missing something in IDOT's response as to why they do not track dooring accidents. They state that they do not track them because they do not involve a moving vehicle but then what are they considering the bicyclist to be?

Our government "hard" at work! lol

Sorry to say, but I believe that this law is unenforceable.  Unless a police officer witnesses the violation and is willing to enforce this law, there is no way to have the police enforce 3 feet.  The best you could do is go to the closest police station and kindly ask the officer to issue a desk citation.  You might as well forget this law exists.  

 

If you ever encounter any harassment on the road from any other user, your first consideration should be to identify the offender.  Always get the license plate and make/color of the vehicle first!  Let them see you write it down.  They will never bother you again.  On the slight chance that you are dealing with some real winner, you will at least be able to tell the cops.  

Wait, isn't that how pretty much all traffic laws are enforced? The cops sees someone doing it, and gives them a ticket. The point is they just ignore it even if they see it now. If they started giving tickets, people would think twice about doing it...

your duncle said:

Sorry to say, but I believe that this law is unenforceable.  Unless a police officer witnesses the violation and is willing to enforce this law, there is no way to have the police enforce 3 feet.

This was discussed at some length, and changed with lobbying from Active Transportation.

 

http://www.thechainlink.org/forum/topics/illinois-to-begin-tracking

 


SmilingBob said:

 

Is it just me or am I missing something in IDOT's response as to why they do not track dooring accidents. They state that they do not track them because they do not involve a moving vehicle but then what are they considering the bicyclist to be?

Our government "hard" at work! lol

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