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Published on Friday, February 14, 2014

Bill on the move that allows motorcyclists to run red lights

During the 2013 session, legislator’s debated SB 5141 which would allow motorcycles to proceed through traffic signals if the light isn’t triggered by the sensing device. Proponents testified that traffic signals are frequently not set to detect the weight of motorcycles and that they either have to sit at a light for a long period of time, make unsafe maneuvers, or risk getting a citation for running a red light.

Since 2009, Washington law has required that vehicle-activated traffic control signals “routinely and reliably” detect bicycles and motorcycles and that detection areas be clearly marked. Additionally, jurisdictions are required to have procedures for filing complaints when a sensor is not operating correctly. Our research indicates that most jurisdictions do not receive many of these complaints.

Furthermore, since the 1960s, jurisdictions have been installing devices that are not triggered by weight of a vehicle, rather the metal that disrupts an inductive loop sensor.

The bill passed the Senate on February 10 and will likely be scheduled for a hearing in the House Transportation Committee in the next couple of weeks.

Do you get many complaints on this issue? How do you resolve complaints when you get them?

Please contact Brittany Sill and share your experience with this issue.

Categories: Transportation