WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - There is some confusion coming from bikers and drivers after the West Lafayette City Council passed an ordinance Monday saying drivers must leave at least three feet of space when passing a bicyclist.
"I don't know whether to slow down or follow the rule and give them three feet," Driver Katie Thompson said.
"When there are two lines, drivers do not know if they need to swerve out a little bit," Bicyclist Gale Charlotte said.
West Lafayette police want to make sure people are comfortable with the ordinance because it is now in effect, and drivers can be cited.
"This is going to be a very difficult ordinance to enforce," West Lafayette Deputy Police Chief Chris Leroux said. "I think the key to the ordinance is the whole awareness element to it."
Leroux said patrols will look for those out of compliance, but he admits it will be hard to determine if the driver left three feet of room without a measuring stick.
Some drivers said they do not know what to do in heavy traffic or a no passing zone prevents them from getting over to create the three feet of space. Leroux said they need to slow down.
"If you're in a two-lane situation and you have a solid line down the center lane where it indicates no passing you can't go around that bicycle and get the three feet you need and cross the center line," Leroux said. "You're just going to have to stay behind the bicycle until an appropriate passing time is available."
"I think it would be ridiculous for a car not to slow down when they see a biker," Driver Molly Moore said.
Leroux said bicyclists must follow the same rules of the road as drivers.
If you are ticketed it will not create a point against your license. However, you could pay a fine determined by the West Lafayette Traffic Court.
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