Cyclist passing space rarely enforced

CREATED Dec 8, 2013 - UPDATED: Dec 9, 2013

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FORT MYERS, Fla. - For breast cancer survivor Lana Kupferschmid, bike riding is supposed to be enjoyable, not dangerous. 

"I was nearly hit by a woman and she said, 'oh you were going to fast! And I said, I was going to fast? On a bike?' Right," Kupferschmid said.

Kupferschmid is just one of many Fort Myers cyclists who think some motorists don't like sharing the road.

"I think there needs to be a lot of education for motorists about the laws, the rules of the road involving cycling," cyclist Orv Curry said.

In 2006, Florida became one of 22 states that require motorists give cyclists at least three feet when passing. But it's a law not everyone seems to be following.

"I have almost been hit several times riding on the side of the road in the bike lane because of people not moving over," Curry said.

Those motorists should be cited, but numbers show law enforcement agencies may not be paying attention to the law. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, only 84 citations were given across Florida in 2012. In Lee and Collier Counties, only one were given in each county.

"I'm angry," Kupfershmid said. "I see motorists that are not kind and considerate to the riders."

That's why many riders say they prefer riding in a group and always wear a helmet.
 

To look up citations for county, log onto services.flhsmv.gov/SpecialtyPlates/UniformTrafficCitationReport.

Instructions:

1. Select the year and and county you're searching for (or SELECT ALL for statewide numbers)

2. For agency, click SELECT ALL

3. For violation classification, select NON -CRIMINAL (MOVING)

4. For violation codes, select 526-IMPROPER OVERTAKING/PASSING BICYCLE