Motorists may soon be required to give cyclists in bike lanes a wider berth.

Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal Minister Bill Estabrooks introduced legislation last night that, if enacted, will require drivers to give cyclists a full metre of clearance.

Cyclists must keep to the far right of the bike lane.

If the proposed amendments are accepted, drivers would only be allowed to pass a cyclist travelling in the same direction if there is “at least one metre (of) open space between the vehicle and the cyclist.”

But while motorists will be “required” to do so, there are no penalties outlined in the proposed amendments.

“That’s a detail that’s important, and it’s a deterrent, and it will be handled with advice from the Department of Justice,” Estabrooks said yesterday.

If enacted, Nova Scotia would be the first province in Canada to adopt the one-metre rule, which is currently law in 15 U.S. states.

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