Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation earlier this week that requires California motorists give a three-foot buffer zone when passing bicyclists.
California is one of 22 states to pass a law similar to Assembly Bill 1371, which passed through the State Senate on a 31-7 vote in August and was signed by the governor Monday.
Proposed by Assemblyman Steven Bradford (D-Gardena), the law — which doesn’t take effect until next September — mandates a $35 minimum fine for any driver who either doesn’t give three feet when passing bicyclists or who doesn’t slow to “a reasonable and prudent” speed when that much room cannot be given.
Brown vetoed a similar bill last year on the grounds that language contained within it was too vague, particularly in the case of drivers unable to put three feet between themselves and cyclists which could have left the state open to lawsuits if drivers crossed dividers or slowed down too much...