New bill would allow motorcycles to drive through red lights - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

New bill would allow motorcycles to drive through red lights

By Curtis McCloud -   bio | email

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -George Bennett loves riding motorcycles and as far back as he can remember he's has had to deal with traffic intersections that can't detect his bike when it comes to a complete stop.

"You sit there through speed cycles of the light, and eventually, you are going to get tired of it, you going to run through the light and that's breaking the law," Bennett said.

That may soon change with a new law being proposed by Georgia legislator Ann Purcell. The new bill would require motorcyclist to come to a complete stop at a red light and wait 60 seconds, check for traffic and then go through the light.

"It would definitely help us in the long run, as long as people treat it as they should and not abuse it," Bennett said.

Eight states have similar legislation. California has required that city's put in new sensors according to the department of transportation there are 40 thousand intersections that would need to be updated.Columbus traffic engineering manager Ron Hamlett says the bill could lead to more accidents in the city.

"It is an inconvenience to be delayed but to cross a very busy intersection, it would be hazardous for a motorcycle to do that because cars just can't see motorcycles," Hamlett said.

 Hamlett says that because the metal mass in motorcycles is different than cars and trucks it could be harder to detect, but passing a bill won't solve the issue, it creates one with the possibility of more accidents.

Motorcycle rider George Bennett doesn't believe the bill would cause problems.

"There is always a chance of that, but as long as people are cautious and they do exactly what they are supposed to do then there shouldn't be an issue with it," Bennett said.

Copyright 2011 WTVM. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly