The law of three feet can save lives

Published 7:00 am Friday, May 30, 2014

Bicyclists are entitled to use the same paved roadways as the operators of gas powered vehicles.

Over the past couple of years there have been several reports of bicyclists being hit by motorists, at times suffering fatal injuries.

One recent occurrence concluded with the driver of a vehicle who killed a bicyclist being sentenced to 12 years in prison.

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The worst part is that the man responsible for the bicyclist’s death didn’t stop to render assistance; instead he fled the scene.

There is the possibility that if the driver had stopped and called for help, medical aid could have been administered in time to save that man’s life.

As the push continues to become more active, more and more people are looking for ways to get off the couch and exercise. Bicycles are an effective and low cost way to achieve this. In addition, they are fun to ride.

Because of the lack of trails or segregated bike paths along roadways in this county, bicyclists are forced to travel the same roads used by cars and trucks. This puts bicyclists in danger of being struck, especially if the driver is talking or texting on a cell phone, or otherwise distracted.

Mississippi law states all motorists are required to provide bicyclists a three-foot right of way. That means motorists must provide ample room while passing a bicyclist to ensure they are not hit.

No one should have to risk serious injury or death when exercising or enjoying a leisurely bike ride. So keep your eyes on the road, and when you come upon someone riding their two-wheeled mode of human-powered transportation, give them three feet.