New Traffic Laws Permit Passing Cyclists

Jul 1, 2015

A number of new driving and traffic safety laws take effect in Virginia on Wednesday that could provide some relief to plenty of motorists.  But if drivers aren't careful, they also could be relieved of some hard-earned cash for new infractions.

Flickr user Benson Kua
Credit Creative Commons

If you're an impatient driver on a single-lane road with slower moving obstacles in front of you, there's good news.

“You may cross a double yellow line to pass a pedestrian or a device which is moved by human power. Which is including bicycles, skateboards, and foot scooters.”

The DMV's John Saunders says on the other hand, not only must you do so safely—but a new law could get you cited if you're too intimidating with your vehicle.

“What the law does, is it includes bicycles, mopeds, and other non-motorized vehicles to be now included in that list of vehicles that you should take prudent caution in your distance.”

If you're passing a stopped waste collection vehicle, you have to slow down to 10 miles below the speed limit AND allow at least two feet between you and that vehicle. The state's "move over" law has been revised to add all traffic management service vehicles with blinking amber lights to the list that requires drivers to move over one lane or slow down.

“Those are two trucks, and other vehicles, that may be on the side of the road assisting in that incident management. It would give them the same level of safety as you would a flashing blue light or flashing red light.”

And drivers who are nabbed by red light cameras now have the right to appeal the violation.

Additionally, drivers for Uber and Lyft must now register their vehicles with the DMV and comply with state regulations.