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California’s cyclist community is up in arms over Gov. Jerry Brown’s veto of Senate Bill 910, a measure requiring motorists to give a three-foot space when making a pass on city streets or to slow to a speed of 15 mph or less.

“On streets with speed limits of 35 or 40 mph, slowing to 15 mph to pass a bicycle could cause rear end collisions. On other roads, a bicycle may travel at or near 15 mph creating a long line of cars behind the cyclist,” says a message attached to Brown’s veto.

Bicyclist Ted Rogers yesterday published an open letter in rebuttal to the logic employed by Brown and requested that he agree to participate in a “bike summit” with concerned riders.

“In choosing to veto this bill, you have chosen to protect drivers — who are already protected by crumple zones, airbags, and seat belts — from rear-end collisions that are unlikely to ever occur,” reads a part of the letter, noting that other states that have enacted similar laws have not reported an increase in rear-end collisions.

Rogers goes on to point out that most bicyclists have only helmets as safety gear and that these helmets are only rated to be effective at speeds of 14 mph or less.

As of last week, the bill is back in the senate for consideration of the governor’s veto.

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