Motorists Can’t Obey the Three Feet for Safety Act if They Don’t Know About It.

The Three Feet for Safety Act will finally go into effect on September 16, 2014. The law requires motorists to give at least three feet of clearance when passing a bike in the same lane. But how will they know about the new law?  This is where your California Bicycle Coalition comes in.

From day one of the long campaign for the Three Feet for Safety Act we realized that the key benefit of the bill was education. Enforcement is important but most violations won’t be seen by police officers. CalBike’s Three Feet for Safety Outreach Plan has three components and we need your help.

  1. Saturate the California media market around September 16th when the law comes into effect.
  2. Win widespread viral marketing through bumper stickers and window clings on thousands of cars throughout the state.
  3. Post official roadside traffic signs everywhere they’re needed.

Strategy 1 benefits from the energy of our affiliate local bicycle advocacy organizations across the state, and the power of AAA’s media machine. Assemblymember Steven Bradford, who authored the bill, will join a statewide press conference highlighting the new law. The California Bicycle Coalition is happy to be working with both of AAA’s California chapters. They are the right messenger for speaking to motorists and with our assistance we are honing the message to emphasize the importance of obeying the law without dramatizing the danger and scaring people away from biking.

The California Bicycle Coalition will provide media packets to our affiliates so that they can take advantage of media interest in the issue and educate motorists in their communities.

Strategy 2 depends on you. Do you have a car? Get a bumper sticker or a window cling. You can order stickers in the form below. A big social media campaign will reward people for applying a sticker or bumper sticker. AAA will distribute 10,000 window clings and Three Feet for Safety Act fliers to every motorist they assist during the month of September. You can order stickers here, individually or in bulk.

3footsignStrategy 3 is where the rubber meets the road. Just like the “Bicyclists Allowed Use of Full Lane” sign provides education about the law exactly where it’s needed most, a “Motorists Shall Give Three Feet When Passing Bikes” sign will be hard to miss. CalBike is working with the California Traffic Control Devices Committee to get a sign approved as soon as the law goes into effect so that local agencies can install them wherever they’re needed.


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