VICTORY! Assembly approves 3-foot passing bill, sends to Governor

California drivers could see signs like this one if Gov. Jerry Brown signs SB 910 into law.


California is one step closer to providing better protection for bicyclists when sharing the road with other vehicles.

Late on Tuesday afternoon, the California Assembly voted 44 to 25 to approve Senate Bill 910, the 3-foot passing bill co-sponsored by the California Bicycle Coalition and the City of Los Angeles. The bill was approved by the California Senate in June and now goes to Gov. Jerry Brown for his signature.

If Brown signs the bill into law, California would be the 19th state to require drivers to give bicyclists at least three feet of clearance when passing them from behind in the same lane.

“We’ve heard too many stories of people having close calls or worse caused by drivers not giving enough space as they pass someone on a bicycle. This new law will make it easier to educate drivers to give a little more space,” said CBC Executive Director Dave Snyder. “Protecting people who want to bicycle — and making that choice an easier one for people to make — is an important step in making California a healthier and safer place to live.”

Under existing law, drivers who overtake other vehicles and bicycles from behind in the same lane must do so at an unspecified “safe” distance. SB 910 specifies three feet as the minimum passing distance when drivers pass bicyclists from behind.

The next step in our  safe passing campaign  is for the Governor to sign SB 910.  “I hope that Governor Brown appreciates how important it is that we can tell drivers to give three feet. It’s a critical tool to get drivers to be a little more mindful when they pass someone on a bicycle. By signing this bill, he’ll help save lives, and encourage more people to ride bicycles.”