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New Law Allows Illinois Riders to Run Red

Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Harley-Davidsons Womens Ride
Motorcyclists in Illinois can now legally pass through red lights if they have been sitting for a long time at a stop light whose sensors don't register them.
Illinois motorcyclists sitting at red lights waiting for them to change will now be able to pass through the intersection if sensors don’t register them. Motorcycles are often unable to trigger the magnetic sensors which inform traffic lights a vehicle has pulled up and motorcyclists either have to sit and wait for a car to pull up behind them before the signal will change or run through the light once it’s clear at the risk of getting a ticket.

Illinois HB S860 allows motorcyclists to run the red light after a reasonable amount of time, an amount which wasn’t established in the bill, but is said to be 120 seconds. The argument over the amount of time a motorcyclist must wait was one of the reasons stated as to why Illinois Governor Pat Quinn vetoed the bill. Illinois lawmakers, who overrode the governor's veto, assured Quinn the issue would be addressed in the upcoming session.

There is one stipulation, though. The law doesn’t apply to Illinois cities with more than two million people, meaning it doesn’t apply to riding in Chicago.

Besides being an inconvenience, sitting at intersections is dangerous and leaves motorcyclists vulnerable to inattentive drivers. In March of 2010, a group of riders sitting at a red light in Phoenix were plowed down from behind by a dump truck, killing three motorcyclists and injuring six others, including a Phoenix Fire Department captain. 

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ctrlfreak   January 6, 2012 01:33 PM
I've patiently waited through 4 light cycles for a traffic light to finally sense my bike with some fork wiggling and rolling back and forth. I really do wish these laws would be passed for the safety of motorcyclists everywhere.
lilroseyone   January 6, 2012 04:27 AM
I personally do not own a motorcycle, BUT I am married to a man who DID own one. We do belong to ABATE.. a motorcycle rights and education group. I do believe they need to make those sensors a bit more sensitive for motorcycles. I have seen a couple times where motorycles have either been in or have almost been in an accidentbecause of OTHER drivers. Remember people that there are bikes on the road and that they are smaller than those cars that have metal on 4 sides in comparison to bikes that dont have four sides around them. Well thats my two cents worth, good night
Piglet2010   January 4, 2012 09:33 PM
I end up doing quite a few unplanned right turns on red due to sensor sensitivity being set too low. Properly adjusted, even a 20-pound bicycle should trigger a green light, but many street departments have no clue. I generally don't run the lights, since there are so many red light cameras these days. Wonder how much of a pain will it be to get automated tickets discharged once the law goes into effect?
guambra2001   January 4, 2012 06:22 PM
I have to run red lights all the time unfortunately, whish other states would look at this.
Glen   January 4, 2012 02:56 PM
Lets take a pole here. How many of us have to roll on red because of these sensors. With me it's about ever ride.