H5074 – PBC Recommendations



H5074 – PBC Recommendations

At our meeting with Representative Gemma, we proposed a combination of some changes to existing laws and wording for a completely new law based on the Orgeon Vulerable Roadway User legislation.  These recommendations are what Representative Gemma will be presenting to the House Judiciary tomorrow instead of the original 3-foot legislation.  If you plan to join us at the hearing tomorrow, I would suggest you read the following suggestions we presented:

Changes to existing RI Laws


For the most part, the changes to existing laws are minor edits to bring them more in line with the rest of Title 31 and to update them to match the reality of cycling today.

The big changes are included in the proposed vulnerable roadway user portion of the bill.  Representative Gemma passed our recommendations by the legal teams and our understanding is the only change they’ve made, other than to reformat the suggestions in a bill format, was to reduce the maximum fine to $800.  While I would love to see this fine stay at the level we proposed, it is still almost a 10 fold increase over any other fine you will see relating to an incident between a motorist and a cyclist.  Even at this reduced level, I believe it still sends a message.


  • Apr 1, 2009 at 10:01 am

    Need a provision to educate law enforcers to this change. What exactly constitutes a violation? In other words, bicyclists must DIE before anyone is fined. I'd prefer it would have some clause against ATTEMPTS at murder, like close buzzing or intentional cut offs.

  • Apr 1, 2009 at 10:07 am

    Do appreciate the some rewording of a few existing statutes, but "as near as practical to road edge" is still subject to undue interpretation. Should be something like "right 1/3 of travel lane unless encumbered".

    I will still pass on the left, just like a vehicle. For bicyclists like me, STOP signs = YEILD signs. Red lights = STOP signs. Otherwise, I can't even get through many intersections safely with the way they've rigged the lights. And there's so many STOP signs on side streets, you might as well walk. Who has the contract for producing them all, somebody's cousin?

  • Apr 1, 2009 at 11:27 am

    Mark, what time is the hearing, and in what room? I don't see mention of that in your post.

  • Apr 1, 2009 at 11:40 am

    Sorry, it was in the previous post:

    4pm in room 205 of the State House.

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  • Howard Panken
    Apr 1, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    31-19-10 e requires 20 square inches of reflective material. Is that possible on a normal bicycle?

  • Apr 1, 2009 at 6:45 pm

    Howard, we talked about this and decided the intent of the law was to have 20 square inches of "persistence of vision" reflective area. For instance, a wheel reflector spinning around at a normal bicycle speed would provide plenty of reflective area. Honestly, we ran out of time to make every single edit we might have wanted to, our main focus was the larger law change.

  • Apr 2, 2009 at 5:27 am

    While you're at it, you might as well introduce much needed legislation to force AMTRAK, businesses, cities, state, towns and wherever public is supposedly invited to visit to maintain "in good working order" bike racks in adequate numbers and unobstructed sidewalk approaches in all new plans (and retrofit existing within last 10 years, since it has been federal law).

    Dave's, Shaws, Stop&Shop and most markets except Whole Foods all lack bike racks. Consequently, you should boycott them, as I do. If enough cyclists were to vocally boycott, or resort to the tactic of carrying bike in inside a carriage and telling people why, eventually you'll see some racks.

    There's a growing national trend for pedestrians to be run over in parking lots. In fact, it's the most likely place to be killed walking. Mainly this is due to improper layout of parking without sidewalks. Why? To pack in as many cars as possible at least cost.

    These intentional and/or negligent safety hazards could easily become the basis for class action civil suits, when the cures are so simple they should be mandated in all zoning law throughout state.

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  • Apr 4, 2009 at 7:48 am


    While checking out the bike rout signs in the cityThey were well placed,

    well read,and easy on the eyes for enhancing the city.The only danger are the pot holes along the way and should be repaired as soon as possable..

    Sorry, i'm unable to make the meetings at this time:)