…of House Transportation SubCommittee 2 unanimously this morning, but only after it had been amended to correspond with the language in Delegate Keam’s HB 2124, which reads:
The driver of a vehicle shall not follow another vehicle, trailer, or semitrailer more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard to the speed of both vehicles and the traffic on, and conditions of, the highway at the time.
I spoke in favor of the original language which inserted “motor” in front of the first vehicle. Del. Cox and several members of the committee favored the removal of “motor,” feeling that it treated ALL vehicles the same, and did not favor the bicyclists at the expense of the motorists.
Seems like a minor difference, but my concern was that this language might be used by law enforcement to ticket riders drafting in a peloton for following too closely.
Tom Bowden, who was with me, (along with Sheryl Finucane, Brantley Tyndall from the VBF Board, and Patty Kruszewski), convinced me that this was not a problem, since riders drafting in a peloton could defend against such a charge by stating that they were doing so by mutual consent, and NOT more closely than is reasonable and prudent when bicycling. I then noted my agreement with the amended language.
Riders who ride in pelotons (particularly in Hanover county) please familiarize yourself with this language (which I now think will sail right through, with Delegate Cox’s support) and this reasoning, in the event you should ever get stopped by law enforcement for following too closely.
Also note that riding more than two abreast is NEVER permitted under the code.
A long afternoon in store, with 38 bills in the Senate Transportation Committee (the Dooring bill being of the most interest to us, but also four bills restricting texting and hand held phone usage while driving, and the bill requiring cyclists on trails which cross streets at grade to stop at stop signs.
Following this committee, at 5 p.m., a House AG committee will hear four bills that will permit Sunday Hunting.
Please contact your senator before this afternoon’s meetings, which start around 1:30 PM.