People like the ideas of seeing more bicyclists in their communities, but aren't totally sure about the laws, those are some of the findings of a recent statewide survey.
The Athens-based non-profit group Georgia Bikes released results from a statewide survey they did in collaboration with the Governor's Office of Highway Safety and the UGA's Survey Research Center.
92 percent of respondents agreed that bicycling is a long term investment in higher quality of life and health for their community. The same percentage said they'd feel better having a better understanding of the 3-foot safe passing law for cars and cyclists.
While the respondents seemed to have a generally positive outlook toward the pedal power movement, there was also some frustration with the non-motorized travelers.
74 percent of people reported that it was either highly frustrating or somewhat frustrating to slow down and share their lane with bicycles.
A smaller number would readily admit to making that frustration known. 20 percent said they'd likely blow their horn or yell when frustrated by the slow down and 11 percent said they'd flash their lights or extend their middle finger toward a cyclist in frustration.
In 2009, Georgia was the sixth deadliest state to ride a bicycle.
City chickens and county chickens
The issue of raising chickens in the unincorporated county made its way before the County Commission last week. Zoning issues had been raised after a complaint by residents whose neighbor was keeping chickens.
Within City of Savannah limits, citizens can keep as many as five hens for personal use, but that same allowance does not currently exist in the unincorporated county.
The Commission voted unanimously to stay the enforcement of the no chicken rule until further review could be conducted by the Metropolitan Planning Commission. They will likely recommend adopting identical language to the City's.
Citizens with chickens in the unincorporated County won't face penalties for infractions now, but there could still be issues with illegal coop structures. Technically, a homeowner would need a permit to build a coop on their property.
Although a small group of chicken supporters had gathered, they weren't given the chance to address the commission.
County Manager Russ Abolt said enforcement had been complaint driven, prompting District Three Commissioner Pat Shay's pun-y clarification: "No harm, no foul."
Chatham County Mosquito Control confirmed the presence of West Nile Virus in Savannah last week after testing mosquitoes from the Midtown area.
Being bitten by an infected mosquito can cause mild to serious illness in people. According to the National Institute of Health, many people who are infected don't actually experience symptoms, but small children, the elderly and pregnant women are all at elevated risk.
In its mild form, the disease is similar to the flu, including fever, nausea, aches, sore throat and swollen lymph nodes. Its severe form may include symptoms like loss of consciousness, stiff neck and confusion; it requires prompt medical attention.
The Chatham County Health Department recommends trying to ignore the fact that it's summer time as the best means of countering the disease. They recommend avoiding outdoor activities around dawn or dusk, wearing long sleeved shirts and pants, and empty containers holding standing water.
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