Local bicyclists urging drivers to respect rules of the road

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond bicyclists want motorists to give them some respect on the roads by not parking or driving in their lanes.

Max Hepp-Buchanan with Sports Backers told 8News Reporter Jonathan Costen it’s mostly a safety issue.

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Max Hepp-Buchanan .

“If you see a bike lane on the side of the road and it’s about five feet wide, and it’s clearly a separate and more narrow lane for people on bikes, please don’t drive in it and please don’t park in it,” Hepp-Buchanan said. “That’s a space someone who’s riding a bike needs in order to be safe, and there’s definitely other spaces for people to drive in and park in.”

As he made his way down Hermitage Road, local bicyclist Larry Jones said the bike lane offers riders a piece of mind.

“You never know what’s going to happen because you’re at the mercy of someone on a cell or someone behind you,” Jones explained.

Hepp-Buchanan insists that educating the public about sharing the roads is essential.

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“It’s really just an issue of education,” he said. “I mean, bike lanes are pretty new to Richmond; it takes time for people to understand why they’re there and who’s using them, so we’re trying to ramp up our education efforts.”

Hepp-Buchanan added that Richmond is steadily becoming a bicyclist kind of town, which adds to the importance of educating the public on the rules of the road.

“It’s growing, the amount  of bike lanes in the region has doubled in the last there years,” he said. “The city has played a big role in that; there’s a plan for a city-wide network of bike lanes. Other cities nationally, they’ve set the bar really high. We’re now getting on the upswing, so we have a long way to go, but it’s great.”

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