|Our Auxiliary light bill, HB 1700, is scheduled to be heard this Monday (February 2nd) before the House Transportation Sub-committee chaired by Delegate Scott Garrett. This bill would allow motorcyclists to utilize auxiliary lighting, such as LED lighting, in order to be more visible at night. It also removes the five second limit on the amount of time that a motorcycle brake light may modulate.
Current Virginia law requires that all lighting be approved by the superintendent of the Virginia State Police. That means that all lighting must go through the federal approval process. The vast majority of smaller lights appropriate for motorcycles have never undergone such a process, and due to the size of the manufacturers making such lighting, most likely never will.
VCOM has worked with Delegate Tony Wilt to fashion a bill which allows motorcycles the protection of side lighting currently enjoyed by operators of cars and trucks.
Below is the name and email address of every Delegate on the sub-committee hearing this bill. VCOM encourages all motorcyclists to email the members of the sub-committee in support of this bill. When doing so remember to point out the following:
The bill increases visibility of motorcycles, especially at night;
Unlike automobiles which are required to have side marker lights or wrap around headlights / tail lights which are visible from the side, motorcycle lights are often only visible from the front and rear and do not have the same illumination as automobiles;
NHTSA published a report on the effectiveness of side marker lights on motor vehicles. The report concluded that side marker lights are a cost effective safety device which reduce the number of nighttime angular collisions that occur in the United States;
Several surrounding states, including Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, have passed similar legislation and motorcyclists from those states are currently riding on Virginia roads with similar lighting. It makes sense to give Virginia motorcyclists the same safety tools that out of state riders already use on Virginia roads.
Please support this sensible bill which makes motorcycles more visible at night.
The list of sub-committee members is below:
Delegate Garrett (Chairman) – DelSGarrett@house.virginia.gov
LeMunyon – DelJLeMunyon@house.virginia.gov
Austin – DelTAustin@house.virginia.gov
Taylor – DelSTaylor@house.virginia.gov
Pillion – DelTPillion@house.virginia.gov
Ward – DelJWard@house.virginia.gov
Carr – DelBCarr@house.virginia.gov