Cyclists Can Roll Through Stop Signs in Thornton, a First in Denver Metro (War on Cars Watch)

A Denver suburb just approved a controversial safety plan that will allow cyclists to slow-roll through stops signs — a practice that studies show keeps cyclists safer than coming to a full stop.

The City of Thornton passed the measure in a 6-2 vote on Tuesday night. The so-called Idaho Stop, which earned its nickname after the state that adopted the practice in 1982, legalizes something most cyclists do already. Perhaps counterintuitively for non-cyclists, the Idaho law has been shown to reduce injuries, which is why advocates here call it the “Colorado safety stop.”

Bicycle advocates hope that other cities — including Denver — will soon follow Thornton’s lead. And they say the practice is often safer because when cyclists move into parts of the intersection where they are visible to drivers, they can better assess if they should continue or come to a complete stop.