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Appeals Court: cities must make roads safe for bicycles

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SEATTLE (AP) _ A Washington state appeals court has ruled that cities must provide safe roadways for all traffic, including bicycles.

The three-judge panel found that cycling is a mode of “ordinary travel,” not just a sport, so cities must maintain roads for safe bicycle travel.

The ruling came in a civil lawsuit filed by Pamela O’Neill, who was seriously injured while commuting home from work in Port Orchard. She was thrown from her bicycle when she hit a patch of road that had gaps in the concrete.

O’Neill sued the city but a Superior Court judge granted the city’s motion to dismiss the case.

The appeals court overturned that dismissal. The judges said bicycles are an integral part of Washington’s transportation plan, so cities have a duty to provide safe roads.