You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.


Welcome to

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Bill gives bicyclists more room on road

If passed, Ohio would become 22nd state with a “three-foot rule” for bicyclists.

A proposed new law would require Ohio’s drivers to be a little more generous when sharing the road with bicycles.

House Bill 145, introduced by Ohio Rep. Mike Henne, R-Clayton, would make drivers keep a distance of at least three feet when passing bicycles. Current law requires only that drivers provide a “safe distance” with no definition of “safe.”

A similar bill was introduced in the Ohio Senate in 2009 but didn’t go anywhere. Since then, three major Ohio cities — Cleveland, Cincinnati and Toledo — have passed their own three-foot rules, and Columbus and Dayton are considering doing so, Henne said.

“Society is just more and more accepting of bicycling, and it’s becoming more and more prevalent,” Henne said. “I think we’re a little more aware of the issue these days as more people bike.”

Under Henne’s bill, failure to observe a three-foot distance would be a minor misdemeanor with a maximum $150 fine, although it could be elevated to a third-degree misdemeanor if the driver has been convicted of certain other driving infractions within the previous year.

The bill also would allow cyclists waiting at red lights to pass through with caution while yielding the right of way if the weight-based sensor that triggers many red-light cycles doesn’t detect them.

If passed, Ohio would be the 22nd state with a so-called “three-foot” rule, said Chuck Smith, chair of the Ohio Bicycle Federation, a cycling advocacy group that is pushing the bill.

Smith, of Vandalia, biked daily to and from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, where he worked as a civilian employee for 22 years, until he retired last year.

“There were several instances where motorists came a little too close to me as I was riding along, and we’re hoping to put an end to that with this bill,” he said.

City commissioner Nan Whaley, a mayoral candidate and advocate for making the city more bike-friendly, said discussions about making a three-foot rule in Dayton are still ongoing but said a state law would be better.

“Any time we put some rules in place that protect bicyclists and walkers, that’s really important if we’re going to be serious about multi-use transportation in our communities,” Whaley said.

A.J. Wagner, a former judge who is running against Whaley for mayor, also thinks Henne’s bill is a good idea but said police officers would have a difficult time enforcing it.

“I say it’s more educational than anything, and that’s not unimportant,” Wagner said.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Ohio

TV star Todd Chrisley’s daughter seriously injured in car accident
TV star Todd Chrisley’s daughter seriously injured in car accident

Get-well wishes are going out to Savannah Chrisley, daughter of Todd and Julie Chrisley from the USA series “Chrisley Knows Best.” Savannah Chrisley was driving in a rainstorm Monday night when she reached down to fix her floor mat. The floor mat became wedged under the gas pedal and her car veered into a guardrail as soon as she looked...
Lowe's lays off about 2,400 assistant store managers
Lowe's lays off about 2,400 assistant store managers

Lowe’s laid off thousands of assistant store managers Tuesday, company officials said. >> Read more trending stories  A company spokeswoman said the layoffs are part of a new store staffing model. The new model will result in the reduction of approximately 1 to 2 assistant store manager positions per store, the spokeswoman said. The...
Captured: Fugitive wanted in death of Orlando Master Sgt. Debra Clayton
Captured: Fugitive wanted in death of Orlando Master Sgt. Debra Clayton

Markeith Loyd, the man wanted in connection with the shooting death of MAster Sgt. Debra Clayton, has been caught.   JUST IN: Here's accused police sergeant killer, Markeith Loyd, being taken into custody at the Orlando Police Department. by WFTV Channel 9 on Tuesday, January 17, 2017 Earlier, Orlando police...
How roller-coaster temps affect your health 
How roller-coaster temps affect your health 

Temperatures have been on a dramatic swing for much of January.  We started the month with temperatures nearly 15 degrees above normal before falling to the coolest daily high temperature for January 6th when the temperature only reached 10 degrees.  We dipped below zero on the morning of January 7th. But just 5 days later, temperatures soared...
Wells Fargo rejects 'offensive and antisocial' Black Lives Matter debit card
Wells Fargo rejects 'offensive and antisocial' Black Lives Matter debit card

A schoolteacher in Baltimore, Maryland, says her submission of a personalized Wells Fargo debit card that contained the message "Black Lives Matter" was rejected for being "offensive and antisocial." The Washington Post reported that Rachel Nash, who is white, came up with the idea for the card out of frustration and wanted to use...
More Stories