ODOT billboard keeps cars safe

Posted by on October 19th, 2005 at 8:46 pm

But what about bikes? I saw this billboard on NE Broadway around MLK. It reads; “Space out. Keep a safe distance,” and it shows two cars. I think it’d be great if they did the exact same billboard but included a bicycle and a car.


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Aaron TarfmanNateAdams Carroll (News Intern)Jessica RobertsElly Recent comment authors
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Wow, thanks for posting this. There should definitely be such public education relating to cyclists–that’s a great idea.

I hate to quibble, but do you rather mean to say “ODOT billboard keeps motorists safe”?

Jessica Roberts
Jessica Roberts

Some places have a 3-foot passing ordinance (cars may not pass bicycles at a distance of closer than 3 feet). We (the BTA) have considered this as a legislative campaign in the past, but haven’t felt like it was a winnable campaign. It is on our list to reconsider for the 2007 legislative session.

Adams Carroll (News Intern)

I’m glad to hear you’re going to reconsider this. Utah passed this as law after 3 cyclist were killed by cars in a span of 37 days. I think it would have a good chance to pass as law here in Oregon.


Im personally not a fan of the 3ft law. I think what is needed is simply more bicycle & spacial awareness. A 3ft law just means cars piling up behind bicyclists and getting impatient. I simply appreciate it when a moterist slows down and carefully passes me (in which Portland drivers are mostly courteous). With more bikes/cars on the roads it would behoove us to develop a more close-quarters mindset about space, as is the mindset in Europe/Asia. They operate in close quarters and are less aloof than us. Of course comprehensive bicycle infrastructure is the safest solution.

Aaron Tarfman

I support the 3ft law and was surprised to learn that it was not a law in Oregon. In other cities in which I’ve lived, I simply took it for granted that the law existed but was never enforced.

Of note, there is a slightly more generally applicable billboard on SE Division telling drivers not to run red lights.

Remember, ODOT thinks cars cars cars. Other modes do not enter their minds unless it is forced upon them.