A modest proposal: Bicyclists rights bring responsibilities

After reading about the new "share the road" ordinance passed by Santa Rosa's City Council, reader Tara Martinelli sent this modest proposal. Why not also teach bicyclists the rules of the road? Here's what she had to say. Dear Road Warrior, In commercials and radio PSAs, motorists are frequently reminded [...]

By | July 17th, 2013|13 Comments

Santa Rosa laws you should know about

Should people be allowed to sleep in their cars? Should bicyclists and pedestrians be able to sue people who harass or assault them? City and county bureaucrats are considering ordinances that would allow both. A Santa Rosa woman has filed suit over local laws that prevent people from sleeping in [...]

By | July 10th, 2013|11 Comments

Sound Off: Bikes vs. cars, red-light runners, more examples of courtesy gone awry

Some recent comments from readers: Unsafe bicycling on skinny roads I am new to the Sonoma County backroads. I believe in sharing the road with bicycles, but was surprised by their behavior. Last Saturday I drove out to the coast on Petaluma Point Reyes road, narrow, double yellow line. The [...]

By | March 13th, 2013|22 Comments

Mailbag: What’s a STAR smog test? Bicyclists must follow rules of the road

We've had several readers write in asking what the new STAR smog test program is. Here's an answer: The state Bureau of Automotive Repair on Jan. 1 changed its smog test program by eliminating Gold Shield smog-check stations, which generally handled potentially high polluting vehicles, and creating STAR test stations, [...]

By | January 11th, 2013|7 Comments

Senate OKs bill with strict rules for passing bicyclists

The state Senate on Friday approved legislation that would require drivers to be at least three feet away when passing bicyclists in most cases and would allow drivers to cross solid yellow lines to pass if safe to do so. If safety conditions didn't allow for the three-foot clearance, then [...]

By | May 26th, 2012|34 Comments

State Senate votes to hike cellphone fines, penalize bicyclists, too

A Palo Alto state senator again is trying to raise the fine on motorists who illegally use cellphones and, for the first time, to fine bicyclists who text or talk on a hand-held phone. The state Senate on Monday approved 24-9 legislation by Democratic Sen. Joe Simitian calling for the [...]

By | May 14th, 2012|17 Comments

Sound off: Readers’ gripes, comments

ARE THESE BICYCLISTS RIDING LEGALLY? I am sending you this letter and attachment in the hope that you will help educate the biking community to their responsibilities under the law. I  understand and support the individual bicycler’s right to share the road with me. But I do expect [...]

By | April 7th, 2012|27 Comments

Passing cyclists? 3 feet or 15 mph

A bill winding its way through the Legislature would require drivers to make sure they stay at least three feet away when passing a bicyclist or slow to no more than 15 mph when passing a cyclist if less than three feet away. The measure, Senate Bill 910, passed the [...]

By | July 1st, 2011|46 Comments

SRPD crackdown on bicyclists

In one of several crackdowns on bicyclists who ride unsafe, Santa Rosa police ticketed 14 riders in the downtown area. Police Sgt. Lance Badger said five uniformed officers roamed the Courthouse and Railroad square areas early Monday evening and cited the bicyclists mostly for riding on the wrong side of [...]

By | June 23rd, 2011|66 Comments

Mailbag: Crossing the double yellow line

Here's a question from a reader: Out on some rural roads in the county, it’s double yellow lines all the way. Sometimes I have to cross it to pass bicyclists. Is what I’m doing legal? Peter CHP Officer Jon Sloat responded: By the letter of the law, yes, it is [...]

By | June 4th, 2011|35 Comments