(UPDATE 13JUL2010...MODot says the proposed bike ban in St. Charles County is illegal as the only the DOT has the authority to regulate such traffic. Spokeman for St. Charles County says they'll fight it in court, if necessary. LINK)
Hot on the heels of the bicycle ban in Black Hawk, Colorado, comes another similar proposal for St. Charles County in Missouri. This one would ban bicycle travel on any road without a shoulder. The 'logic' justifying this proposal is absolutely breathtaking in it's stupidity:
County Councilman Joe Brazil...increasing use of bicycles - especially in organized groups - causes a safety hazard on the roads without shoulders.
"You're going 55 (mph) and there's absolute limited sight distance," he said. "You come around a corner and come upon a bike in seconds and you have to react."..........from STLToday
Everyone using a public road has the responsibility to exercise due care toward all other road users. That means the overtaking driver - regardless of his mode of transportation - is obligated to pass safely. That also means he's obligated to maintain control of his vehicle, slowing when it's appropriate to do so - LIKE WHEN HE'S DRIVING AROUND A BLIND CURVE AND HE CAN'T SEE WHAT'S AHEAD! How tough is that?
Instead, Councilman Brazil wants to absolve motorists of responsibility for their actions and ban cyclists. The problem is that motorist drive too fast for conditions and cannot control their vehicles. The solution is to ban bicyclists. That's hardly a solution. It's more on the order of insanity. Still, if ridicule is the appropriate response to stupidity, let's hope Councilman Brazil gets his due.