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"Share the Road" diversion class now official

Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on February 14th, 2007 at 12:07 pm

Back in June, I wrote about a new traffic citation diversion class that would be offered to bicyclists. Then in October, the man behind the class -- Multnomah County Judge Pro Tem Christopher Larsen -- shared more details about the class with the Portland Bicycle Advisory Committee.

Since that time, a diverse group of experts have been writing the class curriculum and finalizing details. The idea is to offer cyclists the same option motorists have to attend traffic school and get a ticket cleared from their record and have the fine reduced or dismissed completely.

Now the class is finally open for business.

The "Share the Road Safety Class" will start on March 14th. It will meet on the 2nd Tuesday of each month at Legacy Hospital in NE Portland.

CCC's Holiday Bike Drive
[Mike Morrison from Trauma
Nurses Talk Tough was involved
in the creation of the class.]

The class -- which is open to motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians -- is tailored to first-time offenders of certain bicycle and pedestrian-related traffic violations, including running a stop sign/light on a bike. In lieu of the citation and $240+ fine, cyclists can take the 2-hour, $30 class instead.

The class is funded by a grant and put together by Trauma Nurses Talk Tough, the City of Portland's Community and Schools Traffic Safety Partnership, The BTA and others.

I'm still trying to find out at which date violations become eligible for the class. Watch the comments and/or stay tuned for updates.*

For more information on the Share the Road Safety Class, contact Mike Morrison from Legacy Hospital's Trauma Nurses Talk Tough program at (503) 413-2672 or MMorriso [at] lhs [dot] org.

=========
*UPDATE: BTA Policy Advocate Emily Gardner has more details on eligibility:

"Regarding when citations become eligible for the class...

If you have a current citation for running a stop sign, coasting thru a yellow light, etc., chances are you will be going to court in advance of the March 14th start date for the class.

In that case, contact me at the BTA offices and I will find a way to get the class information flyer into your hands. Contest the ticket, go to traffic court, plead not-guilty and request that the ticket be waived and you be allowed to attend the class. Show the flyer to the judge.

The judges should be aware that the class is starting so hopefully it won't be a hassle, but just in case, bring the info flyer so you can show them.

I don't have the list of citations in front of me at the moment, but can answer specific questions if you contact me.

Emily Gardner
BTA Policy Advocate
emily@bta4bikes.org
503/226-0676 x. 11"

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Comments
  • Dabby February 14, 2007 at 12:12 pm

    I believe I remember Greg and Judge Larson asking me What I thought about this, when I was at the Bike Gallery "Portland" bike opening. There was talk of meeting up again, but of course, due to my lack of focus, I did not follow up on it too well.
    I have to say that I was impressed that they were asking a cantankerous old messenger like me what I thought about it, and I realized then that they were serious and it was going to happen.
    I am happy to see that it has.
    Good job!

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  • Cecil February 14, 2007 at 12:19 pm

    Excellent news. Thanks for the update, Jonathan. My goal would be never to have to take this class, but I am glad it is now out there as an option.

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  • ip February 14, 2007 at 12:38 pm

    A-W-E-S-O-M-E news.

    This is a true progress for city of Portland's residents and cyclists.

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  • N.I.K. February 14, 2007 at 1:45 pm

    Maybe it's just me, and don't mistake this as poo-pooing the whole idea -it's great and will no doubt save a ton of cyclists money AND get them to think a bit more about following the law-, but...well, a class entitled "Share the Road" sounds like it ought to be talking to motorists just as much as the people this is currently targeted at. Considering it's aimed at cyclists and pedestrians, the name might as well be appended "...with Motor Vehicles". Which must be done, of course, but there's practically an implied auto-dominance there...

    Is it just me? Is my bike bias blinding me here? :)

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  • i February 14, 2007 at 1:49 pm

    maybe they can get motorists that cause a bike/motorist collision to take the class...

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  • ip February 14, 2007 at 1:51 pm

    Nick and I.
    The class will be an option for drivers who have been ticketed for certain violations (failure to yield at a bicycle/cyclist etc...)

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  • Greg Raisman February 14, 2007 at 1:57 pm

    N.I.K.

    Motorists will also attend the class. There are specific motorist violations related to bicycle and pedestrian safety that will result in motorists being referred to the class.

    For example, violation of 811.050 Failure to yield to rider in bicycle lane is a motorist violation that is eligible for the class on recommendation from the officer or the court.

    Thanks.
    Greg Raisman
    Community and School Traffic Safety Partnership
    Portland Office of Transportation
    (503) 823-1052

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  • N.I.K. February 14, 2007 at 3:03 pm

    Thanks for the information Greg. Sounds 100% excellent all around. :)

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  • Bjorn February 14, 2007 at 11:45 pm

    Corvallis has had a similar program for some time, I'm glad to see it is spreading.

    Bjorn

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  • Emily February 15, 2007 at 4:05 pm

    Regarding when citations become eligible for the class...

    If you have a current citation for running a stop sign, coasting thru a yellow light, etc., chances are you will be going to court in advance of the March 14th start date for the class.

    In that case, contact me at the BTA offices and I will find a way to get the class information flyer into your hands. Contest the ticket, go to traffic court, plead not-guilty and request that the ticket be waived and you be allowed to attend the class. Show the flyer to the judge.

    The judges should be aware that the class is starting so hopefully it won't be a hassle, but just in case, bring the info flyer so you can show them.

    I don't have the list of citations in front of me at the moment, but can answer specific questions if you contact me.

    Emily Gardner
    BTA Policy Advocate
    emily@bta4bikes.org
    503/226-0676 x. 11

    Recommended Thumb up 0

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