Motor vehicles; increases passing distance when approaching bicycles, etc. (HB1048)

Introduced By

Del. Kaye Kory (D-Falls Church) with support from co-patrons Del. Patrick Hope (D-Arlington), and Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-Alexandria)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Following too closely; passing other vehicles.  Adds bicycles, electric personal assistive mobility devices, electric power-assisted bicycles, and mopeds to the list of vehicles that the driver of a motor vehicle shall not follow more closely than is reasonable. Also increases passing distance for passing bicycles from two to three feet. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Failed


01/13/2010Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/13/10 10103794D
01/13/2010Referred to Committee on Transportation
01/22/2010Assigned Transportation sub: #2
02/10/2010Subcommittee recommends reporting (5-Y 2-N)
02/11/2010Reported from Transportation (12-Y 9-N) (see vote tally)
02/12/2010Read first time
02/15/2010Read second time
02/15/2010Engrossment refused by House (43-Y 54-N)
02/15/2010VOTE: --- ENGROSSMENT (43-Y 54-N) (see vote tally)


This bill was discussed on the floor of the General Assembly. Below is all of the video that we have of that discussion, 2 clips in all, totaling 9 minutes.


Jim Wamsley writes:

The current 2 foot passing distance is only comfortable for slow moving cars. Cars going over 15 mph should be required to allow more clearance.

Pete Beers writes:

I'm a cyclist that rides thousands of miles on Virginia roads every year. Last year I was hit twice by careless drivers. I encounter aggressive drivers hostile toward cyclists every week. I take my responsibilities to obey the vehicular laws very seriously. Having some laws that make the roads safer for cyclists is a very high priority for me.

Rules like 3 feet to pass and outlawing tailgating are a good step toward helping increase safety.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

George Simmons writes:

I do not own a motorized vehicle (car/truck). My major source of transportation is my bicycle. We need to do all we can to move people to other forms of transportation such as cycling or public transportation to reduce dependence on automobiles. Anything to protect the right of cyclists to use our roads is welcomed and I would vote for people who support those rights. It would be great if this bill were passed. However, given that few lawmakers ride bicycles, I doubt that it will be.