"Vunerable Road User" Bill(SB 293 & HB 118) in final stages for approval

  • 04/27/2021 8:07 AM
    Message # 10370117
    Paul G (Administrator)

    Here is a quick update from Bike Maryland advocates on the "Vision Zero" goal.

    Bike Advocates, Legislators, and County Executive Applaud Passage of SB 293 and HB 118, “Vulnerable Road User Protections”

    By Bruce Cohen - April 9, 2021

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    April 9, 2021
    Media Contact: Josh Feldmark, joshua@bikemd.org, 410-370-1742

    Annapolis, MD – As Sine Die approaches on Monday, the following leaders offer statements on the final passage of SB 293 and HB 118, which will save lives by encouraging safer driving with stronger penalties for those who hurt or kill pedestrians, bicyclists, motorcyclists, wheelchair users and other vulnerable road users lawfully using or crossing our roads.

    Sponsor and Judicial Proceedings Committee Vice-Chair, Senator Waldstreicher

    A child chases after a ball. A bicyclist commutes to work. A police officer responds to the scene of an accident. Each of these people have one thing in common – they are vulnerable on our roadways. Too many of these vulnerable individuals have lost their lives after being struck by a vehicle. A driver who hurts or kills someone should not be able to simply walk away with a fine. Marylanders deserve better; they deserve accountability. That’s why I was proud to sponsor this important legislation, which passed unanimously.

    Sponsor and Environment and Transportation Vice-Chair, Delegate Dana Stein

    I’m proud to have been one of the leaders in the fight to pass this critical bill that fills a gap in existing law between ordinary traffic violations and more severe offenses. No longer will a driver simply pay a traffic ticket and never show in court when they hurt or kill a pedestrian, cyclist, or any other vulnerable road user. Roads don’t just belong to cars, and now all users will be safer with these protections.

    Bike Maryland Board Member Josh Feldmark

    For more than 10 years, Bike Maryland has worked to pass this important piece of legislation. This is a critical step in protecting not just cyclists, but pedestrians, emergency service workers, and others who are particularly vulnerable on our roadways. With unanimous passage in both houses, we are pleased to see the commitment to everyone on Maryland roads and look forward to additional work with the legislature and the administration to bring Maryland to the goal of Vision Zero, or zero fatalities on Maryland’s roads.

    Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski, Jr

    Strengthening Maryland’s Move Over laws is a critical step towards ensuring the safety of our essential workers and protecting vulnerable road users across our state. Baltimore County made this important legislation a priority this session and we’re grateful for the efforts of Delegate Stein, Senator Waldstreicher, and all those in the General Assembly who took action to help protect those who work so hard to improve our public infrastructure and keep our roadways safe.

    Bike Maryland Board Member Nigel Samaroo

    As a cyclist who was severely injured by a driver in 2017 and has testified in support of this legislation for the past 3 years, I am gratified to see this very needed legislation receive unanimous bipartisan support in both chambers of the Maryland Legislature and make its way to the Governor’s desk for signature. This critical legislation marks an important step in strengthening the legal protections for vulnerable users of Maryland’s roadways.

    Bicycle Advocates for Annapolis & Anne Arundel County President Jon Korin

    This important law will encourage drivers to use greater caution when encountering people walking and biking and reverse the sad trend of rising fatalities among people outside of vehicles who are hit by people inside of vehicles. This was the #1 legislative recommendation of the Maryland Bicycle Safety Task Force and we are grateful that it
    was supported by the Maryland Department of Transportation, Motor Vehicle Administration and State Highway Administration.

    Last modified: 04/27/2021 8:14 AM | Paul G (Administrator)

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