• Vincent Maranda

Cyclists on Main Road – pass with loving care!


Q. As a motorist, am I breaking the law on Main Road when forced to pass the solid line to go around cyclists hogging the road? Should the cyclists bear right to let me pass? Must I just follow at a slow speed?

A. It usually goes something like this:

Some drivers fume in their cars while following cyclists on Main Road who sometimes take up a lot of room. Especially those wearing colourful competition suits with distasteful advertising. Cyclists may be fuming too in reaction to cars following too closely without passing.

Tribal war feelings may then take over. Some combatants incontrovertibly steer their wheels to a clearly invasive area on the road. This is how they inform the enemy of their personal ‘judiciary’ decision on what is an appropriate territorial claim.

Most cyclists though eventually move to the far right when drivers follow too closely. Flight, as opposed to fight, becomes the better choice considering the imposing sight of a two-ton vehicle.

Rest assured, however, that these unwelcome feelings can now be filed in the shame drawer of your souvenir cabinet. Your new action plan should now take into account the Highway Safety Code or primary school law on road sharing. We must ‘Je me souviens’ the following sections:

S.341 – No driver of a road vehicle may pass a bicycle within the same traffic lane unless the driver may do so safely, after reducing the vehicle’s speed and ensuring that a reasonable distance can be kept between the vehicle and the bicycle during the manoeuvre.

S.344 – The driver of a road vehicle may cross (a solid single line) providing that he can do so in safety, to pass … a bicycle.

A reasonable distance in the law is 1.5 metres where the maximum speed is more than 50 km/h or 1 metre when less than 50 km/h.

Therefore, when you see a cyclist on Main Road, taking – in your view – too much room, just calm down and when it’s safe, pass the cyclist with loving care. If you are a cyclist, go quickly to the right and give the loving driver a chance. Everyone gets a trophy.

Please send your legal questions to editor@yourlocaljournal.ca

For legal advice please go to: vmaranda.com

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