Give bikes 3 feet law begins Tuesday

On Tuesday, Sept. 16, California’s new three-foot bike-passing law goes into effect. To spread the word and to dowse misconceptions, People Power will join local elected officials, as well as representatives from the Watsonville and Scotts Valley Police Departments, the Capitola AAA office, the Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission, and the Santa Cruz County Health Services Agency, in hosting an educational event outside Santa Cruz City Hall at 10 a.m. In the past year in Santa Cruz County, at least three cyclists have been killed and many more have been injured in automobile collisions in Santa Cruz County. Under the new law, violators will face a $35 fine plus fees. If a collision occurs, expect  a $220 fine that balloons to $959 with fees. People Power will be handing out free bumper stickers related to the new law at Tuesday's event. CHP offers course for teen, senior drivers Later this month, the California Highway Patrol will hold two free traffic safety courses aimed at helping teen and senior drivers better appreciate their roles on the road. The agency will host a Start Smart class for teens and their families 6:30-8:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 25 at the Aptos branch of the Santa Cruz Public Library, at 7695 Soquel Drive. Traffic collisions are the leading cause of death for young people ages 15-20.To face those statistics head on, the CHP will lead the discussion about traffic laws, peer pressure, driving while under the influence, the dynamics of traffic collisions and ways to avoid getting into crashes. Then, from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 26, the CHP will talk to driver's 65 and up during its free Age Well, Drive Smart Program at the Aptos branch of the Santa Cruz Public Library. With a goal of helping older drivers keep their car keys longer, topics include: tuning up driving skills; rules of the road; the ways aging impact the body this driving and ways to adapt; determining when it's time to limit or stop driving; and understanding driving alternatives. This course lasts for two and a half hours and is geared toward seniors but anyone can attend. For information and to reserve seats at either of the two courses, call 831-662-0511.
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