Although I live in Broward County, I enjoy your publication. It’s refreshing to see true journalism in a newspaper, rather than political advocacy.

I was saddened by the front page article in your February edition about the cyclists who were involved in a vehicular accident on A1A in Gulf Stream. 

Unfortunately, while A1A is beautiful in many areas, because of barrier-island constraints, it is often very narrow in those same areas. In fact, A1A is so narrow in many places as to be classified as a “substandard” roadway per the Florida Statute addressing cycling. A substandard classification requires that cyclists ride single file, whereas they are permitted to ride two abreast in other areas. 

As the former mayor of Hillsboro Beach, which is a section of A1A classified as substandard, I can attest that without constant police supervision, cyclists ignore this requirement.

While most commentary on this subject seems to focus on the rights of cyclists and the responsibilities of drivers, for everyone’s benefit and safety, cyclists must acknowledge their responsibilities as well. As one of the cyclists interviewed for your article pointed out, in a matchup between an automobile and a bicycle, there is a good chance the cyclist will die. 

If safety is the primary concern of cycling advocates, a statute requiring that cyclists ride single file at all times on all roadways would obviously provide more safety to cyclists. At the very least, cycling clubs should make it part of their club communications to identify roads such as A1A that are classified as “substandard” and remind their members that single-file formation is required by law on these roads.

— Deb Tarrant,
former mayor,
Hillsboro Beach

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