New law aims to keep bicyclists safer

THOUSAND PALMS, Calif. - John Loe rides his bike to work every day.  

"Most of the time, people give you a respectful distance, but there are times when drivers it seems get as close as they possibly can on purpose to freak us out. And it does freak us out," Loe said. 

A new law aims to make sure that doesn't happen anymore - the Three Feet For Safety Act. 

Existing law requires drives to keep at a "safe distance" while passing but the new law establishes exactly what that distance is - three feet. 

John says this gives him, and hopefully others,  a sense of ease. 

"People are so afraid to ride their bikes because they're afraid they're going to get hit by cars," Loe said. 

Drivers who pass cyclists from behind must keep three feet away. If traffic or road conditions prevent them from giving three feet, drivers must slow down and only pass when it's safe.  

If you violate this law, you'll get a $154 fee. If you injure a bicyclist while violating the law, you're fine is $220. 

"It's kind of a common misconception but we pay our taxes and we have as much right as anyone in a four-wheeled vehicle. We follow the same rules of the road as anyone else," Loe said. 

The law goes into effect september 14th next year. 

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