Update on working with Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office

Update on working with Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office

I wanted to give a quick update on my public awareness campaign in partnership with the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office. For a background on these efforts, take a moment to read my post about the origins of my drive to work with law enforcement to improve safety on our local roads.

Since the original post on July 4th, I followed up with Sheriff Boan to push to get a Facebook post on their page. After another in-person visit, we were on the same page and the Sheriff kindly made a public post on the KCSO Facebook page on July 29th. Since then, the post has received 102 positive reactions, and garnered 43 comments. Most encouragingly, there were many people who expressed their appreciation for the Sheriff’s Office supporting cyclists and pedestrians, and sharing their own stories of close calls. The post also started a constructive conversation in the comments regarding the laws and the safest way to pass a cyclists, allowing us to dispel a few myths regarding procedure like honking at cyclists and expecting cyclists to get off of the road for motorists.

My husband and I have regularly been using the sharetheroad@kershaw.sc.gov email address to report close passes and dangerous driving. All of the videos are public on my YouTube channel here. We know at least one video received follow up from Highway Patrol with a knock on the driver’s door to inform him of the issues with his close pass. In this situation, the driver thought he wasn’t allowed to cross the double yellow line so he passed in the same lane as my husband. This incident supports my theory that there are a large number of drivers who just don’t know what to do when approaching a cyclist. That makes it more important than ever to continue to try and educate drivers through whatever resources we have available. I’m grateful that Sheriff Boan agrees with this.

Going forward, I hope we have another post on the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page soon. I’m in touch with other cyclists in-the-know to develop a statewide marketing campaign to try and pitch to organizations to secure funding. I’ve reached out to Palmetto Cycling Coalition with no response, yet. I’d also like to pursue making contact with the Kershaw County Council to see why our county has not adopted the Complete Streets policy when it comes to SCDOT repairing and rebuilding our crumbling and not-fit-for-purpose roadways.

If you’d like to get involved, please email me at fionagretchenmartin@gmail.com.