New Colorado ‘3 Feet’ Bicycle Law Signs Popping Up Around State
There's a new sign in town. Actually, there's a new piece of signage in Colorado, and you'll see it soon on a signpost near you.
Colorado drivers will begin seeing new regulatory signs designed to enhance safety for bicyclists along the state highway system.
Colorado's 'Three Foot' Law
Are you familiar with Colorado’s “Three-Foot” law? According to CDOT, it "...requires motorists to give people biking at least three feet of space between the widest part of their vehicle and the widest part of the bicyclist." I'm a cyclist, and in my case, the "widest part" would be my chubby butt. For most, though, the widest part may refer to the outermost part of their handlebars.
What if Giving Three Feet of Space Takes You Across the Double Yellow Line?
Sometimes it happens; giving the bicyclist three feet requires you to cross the double yellow line. What does one do in a situation such as this? According to CDOT, "Drivers are allowed to cross a double yellow line to do so when it does not put oncoming traffic at risk."
Why the New Design?
According to Colorado Department of Transportation State Traffic Engineer San Lee, “Studies have shown that these signs are more effective at enhancing safety than the ‘Share the Road’ signs people are used to seeing. They also help make it clear that drivers bear the responsibility for safely passing a bicyclist.”
I would have to agree. Looking at the sign, it appears to me at least there is very little in the way of grey area. The message is clear and concise.
When Will You See These New Signs Across Colorado?
CDOT plans to begin installing these new signs across the state beginning in 2022. This could be done during road construction or as part of sign replacement projects.
Share The Road
Colorado is a gorgeous state, and many people find enjoyment in firing up a bicycle and hitting the open road. While I am a cyclist, I rarely bike along major roadways. That may change in the future. Plans for longer cycling trips are slowly inching their way onto my bucket list.
Be on the lookout for cyclists, and keep your eyes open for these new signs. They'll be here before you know it.