Letter to the editor: Safety of cyclists is a shared task

I enjoyed seeing coverage of the Tour de Farms and Kelly Brush Rides in last week’s paper. As an avid recreational cyclist, I am glad to see these kinds of events in our community.

Unfortunately, there were multiple photos showing cyclists riding in an unsafe and illegal manner. Per Vermont statute 23 V.S.A. § 1139 (b), “Persons riding bicycles upon a roadway may not ride more than two abreast except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles or except as otherwise permitted by the Commissioner of Public Safety in connection with a public sporting event in which case the commissioner shall be authorized to adopt such rules as the public good requires. Persons riding two abreast shall not impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic and, on a laned roadway, shall ride within a single lane.”

Multiple pictures showed riders on laned roadways riding two and three abreast. I believe the safety of riders is a shared responsibility – and personal safety is always and ultimately up to the individual. Yes, motor vehicle operators are expected to drive responsibly and safely. And cyclists should be expected to ride responsibly and safely. This includes following the law regarding sharing the road, wearing bright, reflective clothing and appropriate safety gear.

Mutual respect for each other, the laws, and safety measures will make the roads safer for everyone.

Tanya Scuteri


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