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Info - Safety - MAP Reports

November Safety Report

The following information was written in the "Ask a Cop" section of the Arizona Republic by Officer Toby Ehrler. A biker wrote in with this question: "I frequently ride a motorcycle in and around Phoenix and adjoining cities. Occasionally I'll approach a red light but the location/weight of the bike does not trigger the light to change. If there are no other vehicles around to trip the signal, I have to sit there until another vehicle does come along, which could be a very long time. If there is no other traffic around and would it be safe to cross, would it be illegal? If so, what would be my options? Thanks in advance."

Since we have all dealt with this problem, I thought it appropriate to bring this article to ABATE's attention. Here is the Phoenix polices official answer: "Riding a motorcycle can be frustrating at times. You are exposed to the elements, and as a motorcycle officer myself, I know people often don't see us. It is important to realize that when you pull up to a signalized intersection with a red light for your direction, you are obligated to stop and wait for the signal to change to green.

If one encounters an intersection where the weight of the motorcycle does not trigger the sensor and the driver proceeds through the red light, the operator of the motorcycle could be cited.

There is a safe way to navigate this type of problem at an intersection if you encounter it. When approaching the intersection in question try to do so in the curb lane, making a complete stop at the red signal light.

When it is clear to do so, make a right turn (if not prohibited by sign) and then travel a short distance in the new direction. When safe to do so, make a U-turn in the roadway and proceed back to the intersection, again making another right turn on your intended path of travel. This is referred to as "Clover Leafing" the intersection, and it is legal if not prohibited by any signs."

ABATE has tried to collect data about troubled lights in Phoenix. We, the members of ABATE, need to voice our opinions it we want laws in place to help with these problems. In the meantime, it is best to follow Officer Toby Ehrler's advice.

Until we speak again, ride safe.

Joel “JR” Rosen
State Safety Officer