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south carolina does it again


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theetimurban 
Copper - Posts: 126
Copper spacespace
Joined: December 30, 2007
Location: South Carolina, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 12:02 AM / IP Logged  

I'm quite sure that I'm not the only one on this forum that has a problem with the way this country is run.. Political parties aside, all it really boils down to is one question: what's best for the greatest number of people? This past week South Carolina passed a law that literally states that it is now legal, actually not only legal but encouraged, that if you're riding a motorcycle you can/should go through a red light. I'm far from exagerating. The only stipulation to this law is the rider has to wait 2 minutes of the light being red. How is it going to be monitored? It isn't. At least no more so than what is already in place. Don't get me wrong, I understand that nobody wants to get stuck waiting 5-10 minutes for a traffic light; but sacrificing safety, not just your own but others as well, for the sake of convenience is just a joke. At what point did we become a country that coddles the minority? This is the same state that has 3 bike rallys a year. And lucky me, I live in the city where the rallys take place, which turn a town with the population of ~65,000 people into a town with a population of 200,000. So what this law means for me is that for 4 weeks out of the year, I have to drive on streets with ~135,000 people running red lights, legally. Trust me when I say it's bad enough as it is, but with this new law, it shakes me to the core thinking of how many people are going to have to die before they reverse it. For anyone else living in/around South Carolina, make sure you look twice before you cruise through an intersection with a green light, because even though you have the right-of-way, you will be blamed for the accident if a bike pulls out in front of you. Not kidding.

Obviously you can tell how I feel about this new law, but what are your opinions?

jmelton86 
Gold - Posts: 1,228
Gold spacespace
Joined: February 07, 2007
Location: South Carolina, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 12:07 AM / IP Logged  

If someone on a bike runs a red light, legally or not, without making sure it's clear or not and gets hit, you better believe it's their fault!

It is rediculous, though.

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theetimurban 
Copper - Posts: 126
Copper spacespace
Joined: December 30, 2007
Location: South Carolina, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 12:22 AM / IP Logged  

No, dude, apparently (at least this is the way I interpreted it) is that in the event of an accident, the intersection will basically be treated as a 4-way stop and it'll come down to who entered the intersection first.

i am an idiot 
Platinum - Posts: 13,465
Platinum spaceThis member consistently provides reliable informationspace
Joined: September 21, 2006
Location: Louisiana, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 12:23 AM / IP Logged  

Motorcycle Red Light Bill S111 Reaches Governor

S111 has passed both houses of the SC General Assembly and now awaits the Governor's signature to become law.

S111 will address faulty traffic signal devices that fail to detect motorcycles. This bill will clearly increase safety for motorcyclists by reducing the chance of being struck from behind while stranded at a malfunctioning light.

Current language of Senate Bill 111:

(5)    Notwithstanding any other provision of law, if a driver of a motorcycle or moped, or a bicycle rider, approaches an intersection that is controlled by a traffic-control device, the driver may proceed through the intersection on a steady red light only if:

(a)    the traffic-control device is equipped with a vehicle sensor;

(b)    the vehicle sensor has failed to detect the motorcycle, moped, or bicycle because of the motorcycle's, moped's, or bicycle's size or weight; and

(c)    the driver or rider, as the case may be:

(i)    comes to a full and complete stop at the intersection for one hundred and twenty seconds; and

(ii)    exercises due care as provided by law, otherwise treats the traffic control device as a stop sign, and it is safe to proceed."

End of Copy And Paste  

Beginning of my .02

It seems as though there has been more than one occasion where a motorcycle was stuck at a malfunctioning traffic light (a motorcycle does not have enough mass to trip some sensors) and was rear ended and killed, by someone in a Green Buick. (those are the ones that pay less attention than other drivers).   I agree that this is going to be hard to regulate.  But be assured, the motorcycle rider knows he/she is completely vulnerable in any on the road situation, and unlike a driver of an automobile, they will not put themself in danger with this new law.

theetimurban 
Copper - Posts: 126
Copper spacespace
Joined: December 30, 2007
Location: South Carolina, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 12:34 AM / IP Logged  

And people don't run stop signs...? Call me nuts, but I'm pretty sure it's easier to see a bike sitting at a red light in front of you, than one pulling out in front of you from a group of vehicles at an intersection. If the light's malfunctioning, how would it be more likely to detect a car over a motorcycle? It's broke..

What's going to stop a motorcycle from getting hit by a car in under 2 minutes? It's just a ridiculous law, that should've never made it past legislature.

BTW, Idiot, I'm not trying to argue with you or anything, I'm just that amazed at the assininity (is that a word? It is now...) of this law.

i am an idiot 
Platinum - Posts: 13,465
Platinum spaceThis member consistently provides reliable informationspace
Joined: September 21, 2006
Location: Louisiana, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 12:42 AM / IP Logged  

Trust me you are not going to have to do anything any different than you did yesterday.  The guy on the Motorcycle is NOT going to pull out in front of ANY oncoming traffic.  This law does not give him the right to pull out in front of you and make you in the wrong for hitting him.  It tells him to treat the light as a stop sign, for him.  Not to treat it as a 4-Way stop.   We are terrified of cars on the road, we know that they do not pay attention to anything they need to pay attention to.  We will not pull out in front of you, trust me on this one.

theetimurban 
Copper - Posts: 126
Copper spacespace
Joined: December 30, 2007
Location: South Carolina, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 12:50 AM / IP Logged  

I'm well aware that not all people riding a bike are going to "drive it like they stole it." But even people that ride bikes, think it's a horrible idea. It's the same as any other law, people are going to just follow the parts of it that they like. There are undoubtedly going to be people that ride that just acknowlege the part, motorcycles can go through red lights. Have you been to Harley Week in Myrtle Beach, btw?

i am an idiot 
Platinum - Posts: 13,465
Platinum spaceThis member consistently provides reliable informationspace
Joined: September 21, 2006
Location: Louisiana, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 1:14 AM / IP Logged  

I ride the wrong kind of equipment to make it there that week.   But I am sure that it is a lot easier to get around there than it is in Sturgis.  They had a population of 6,442 people in the year 2000.  They convert Cow Pastures to campgrounds to accomodate the extra people.  Buffalo Chip Campground.  http://www.buffalochip.com/ 

I understand your frustration, but I really don't think it will affect you or anybody you know.  But let us know in a month or so, if it has been a problem for you. 

i am an idiot 
Platinum - Posts: 13,465
Platinum spaceThis member consistently provides reliable informationspace
Joined: September 21, 2006
Location: Louisiana, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 1:28 AM / IP Logged  

http://www.abatesc.com/CallToAction.php

It seems as though there has been more than one occasion where a motorcycle was stuck at a malfunctioning traffic light (a motorcycle does not have enough mass to trip some sensors) and was rear ended and killed, by someone in a Green Buick. (those are the ones that pay less attention than other drivers).   I agree that this is going to be hard to regulate.  But be assured, the motorcycle rider knows he/she is completely vulnerable in any on the road situation, and unlike a driver of an automobile, they will not put themself in danger with this new law.

Moderators please replace the large text post above with this one.  Or just delete this one.   If I had been thinking I would have done it when I could have.

theetimurban 
Copper - Posts: 126
Copper spacespace
Joined: December 30, 2007
Location: South Carolina, United States
Posted: May 29, 2008 at 3:24 AM / IP Logged  
You don't actually need a Harley to come to Harley Week. But my point was, if you had, you would know that people don't drive like they know they should, and it's bad enough as it is. I think that for some reason you think that I'm against motorcycles and people riding them. I promise I'm not. Far from it actually. My dad rides, my older brother rides, a bunch of guys I work with ride, several of my friends, and hell, believe it or not, I used to. You have absolutely no idea how happy I am that they waited til after the bike weeks to pass the law (there are 2 consecutive rallys, each one lasting about a week and a half in May, Harley Week then Black Biker Week). Just to give you an idea of what I mean, within 19 days there were almost 3,000 traffic citations issued only to bikers, 4 deaths involving bikers, and over 200 accidents involving motorcycles. You think that it wasn't intentional for the governer to wait until the week after the bike rallys to pass a law that allows bikers to go through red lights? How could anyone expect things to get better (which really is what laws are for, to raise the quality of life) by ignoring one of the first things people learn not only about driving, but as a child. What are they gonna call "Red Light, Green Light" now, "Red Light, But It's Cool To Go So Long As You Think It's Clear, Green Light"? I'm curious to see what's going to happen during the fall rally. I'll report in then, if Mark Sanford hasn't passed some other unneccesary law by then, unlikely. Like I said, I absolutely cannot believe the government would sacrifice safety for convenience. What are we? China? I could care less about some hick town in South Dakota, I don't live there, my family doesn't live/drive there, in fact nobody I care about lives there, and you'll notice they haven't passed a law saying that people can run red lights. Again, I understand the arguments, but it's a law that'll take more lives than save.
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