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New State Traffic Law Starts Tuesday

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New laws are set to take effect on Tuesday including one that will allow motorcycle and bike riders to pass through intersections, despite having a red light.

The Nevada Legislature passed Assembly Bill 117 earlier this year.

The new law will allow vehicles like motorcycles, trimobiles, scooters, and bicycles to pass through an intersection if the traffic signal cycles through twice and doesn't turn green.

One goal of the law is to improve mobility across the state. Sensors in traffic signals are triggered by the metal surface area of a vehicle and its alignment with signal detectors. Sensors sometimes do not detect smaller vehicles such as motorcycles, bicycles, scooters and trimobiles.

In light of the new law, the departments of Public Safety and Transportation have joined forces to launch "Safe on Red," a statewide public awareness campaign designed to inform all road users of the new legislation and encourage them to use extra precaution near signalized intersections.

As part of the campaign that runs through November, Nevadans will begin to see "Safe on Red" billboards, hear public service announcements and see posters and pamphlets at more than 200 motorcycle and bicycle shops.

With nearly 400 lives lost in Nevada intersection crashes in a recent five-year span, the campaign is aimed at helping reach zero fatalities by reminding everyone on the road to follow tips such as obeying traffic signals and stop signs, looking both ways before entering an intersection and yielding to others.

Democratic Assemblyman Mike Sprinkle is the primary sponsor of AB 117.

"What ends up happening, if this law were not in place, ultimately, if something doesn't trigger that light, these individuals are forced to break the law to get our of that intersection."

Sprinkle says it won't just save motorists time, but it will also make Nevada roads safer for riders and cyclists.

"With a statistic of 83% of fatal or near-fatal accidents happening with these individuals in the intersection, the sooner we can get them out of that intersection, the better it is for everybody."

For more information on the new law and other safety information, visit www.SafeOnRed.com.

(Nevada Department of Public Safety contributed to this report.)

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