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CT Legislature Passes Bike Bill

SB502 has passed the legislature and is awaiting signature by the Governor. Among the things this bill does is to clarify where cyclists can ride within a traffic lane, and to clarify that a motorist can cross the yellow line in order to pass a cyclist (while maintaining the three foot minimum gap).

The latter item has been an issue in other states where the three-foot passing law was enacted, but the police were ticketing motorists who crossed the yellow line when trying to pass cyclists.

Link to Bill

In reply to DinoSore

This goes into effect July 1. See the following from Bike Walk CT:

"Bike Bill Signed, Goes Into Effect on July 1 Senate Bill 502, the Bike Bill we advocated, for was passed with strong bipartisan support on May 20, signed by the Governor on June 1, and takes effect on July 1. We'll be spreading the word to help get good enforcement. The new law, now Public Act 15-41: allows two-way bicycle lanes, buffered bike lanes, and cycle tracks to be designed in CT and permits motorists to cross the double yellow line to pass slower-moving cyclists and other road users when it's safe to do so. Additionally, the new law eliminates the confusing rule requiring cyclists to ride as far to the right as practicable. Instead, the law now requires cyclists to ride as close to the right side of the road as is safe, as judged by the cyclist. Bike Walk Connecticut specifically advocated for that language, which is modeled on a best practice from Colorado as identified by the League of American Bicyclists.

As of July 1, cyclists don't have to ride as close to the right side of the road when:

  1. Overtaking or passing another vehicle proceeding in the same direction;

  2. Preparing for a left turn at an intersection or into a private road or driveway;

  3. Reasonably necessary to avoid conditions, including, but not limited to, fixed or moving objects, parked or moving vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, animals, surface hazards or lanes that are too narrow for a bicycle and a motor vehicle to travel safely side by side within such lanes;

  4. Approaching an intersection where right turns are permitted and there is a dedicated right turn lane, in which case a bicyclist may ride on the left-hand side of such dedicated lane, even if the bicyclist does not intend to turn right;

  5. Riding on a roadway designated for one-way traffic, when the bicyclist may ride as near to the left-hand curb or edge of such roadway as judged safe by the bicyclist; or when

  6. Riding on parts of roadways separated for the exclusive use of bicycles, including, but not limited to, contra-flow bicycle lanes, left-handed cycle tracks or bicycle lanes on one-way streets and two-way cycle tracks or bicycle lanes."