Gary Helfrich makes a point of listening to the complaints and the rants, the calls and emails of people upset by cyclists who don’t follow traffic laws or who clog narrow roads.
Helfrich, the head of the Sonoma County Bicycle Coalition, knows that bicyclists can do better at following traffic rules, but said that doesn’t give a motorist the right to drive dangerously, or assault a cyclist.
Helfrich, 59, head of the bicycle coalition for the past two years, is on a mission to shift the culture and attitude toward cyclists.
Healdsburg wants to be seen as a bicycle-friendly community, but not to the extent of approving a law that makes it easier for cyclists to sue motorists who harass or assault them.
Santa Rosa leaders on Tuesday said they are receptive to a law aimed at protecting cyclists and pedestrians from harassment. Much like the laws passed by Sebastopol in December and Sonoma County last month, the new law would make it easier for cyclists and pedestrians to sue people who harass or intimidate them.
The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday formally approved a local ordinance aimed to make it easier for cyclists and pedestrians to sue those who harass or intimidate them. The ordinance is modeled on similar laws adopted by several cities, including Sebastopol, which passed its ordinance in December. Sonoma County becomes the first county nationwide to adopt such a measure.
The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday unanimously endorsed a proposed ordinance that would make it easier for bicyclists and pedestrians to sue those who harass or intimidate them.
The Healdsburg City Council on Tuesday agreed to consider an ordinance that would make it easier for bicyclists and pedestrians to sue motorists who threaten or harass them. The council, following a brief presentation by the Sonoma County Bicycle Coalition, agreed to consider the issue at its March 4 meeting.
Sebastopol became the first city in Sonoma County and one of few in the nation to pass an ordinance that makes it easier for bicyclists and pedestrians to sue drivers who threaten or harass them.
Bicycle advocates unveiled a proposed local ordinance Friday meant to arm cyclists and pedestrians with new legal ammunition against drivers who intentionally threaten and harass them.
The proposal from the Sonoma County Bicycle Coalition would make it easier for ‘vulnerable users’ to sue drivers in civil court. It defines various forms of harassment and triples monetary penalties, making cases more attractive to attorneys.
It’s intended to fill perceived gaps in criminal prosecution, which has a higher standard of proof and requires such things as as the positive identification of the driver.