Campus to host event to enhance bike safety

By Daily Illini Staff Report

Light the Night, an annual event to educate the public about state laws regarding bicycle lights and reflectors, will take place on Thursday, Sept. 11 at the Alma Mater, Illinois Street Residence Hall and off-campus at the LiFECykle Bike Shop, 79 E. Beardsley Ave. 

Bicycle lights will be distributed and installed, in an effort to ensure the public has a front light and rear reflector when riding at night. 

From 4 to 7 p.m., volunteers and law enforcement will install 775 bike lights, educate bicyclists about laws requiring bikes to have lights during night time hours and provide information about safety during both daylight and nighttime riding, according to a press release from Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District, CUMTD. 

Members of the Light the Night Organizing Group include CUMTD, the city of Urbana, the city of Champaign, the University and the Champaign Regional Planning Commission.

The organization chose to distribute the lights now because daylight hours are shrinking and Daylight Savings Time is approaching, according to the release. 

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Volunteers will only be installing lights to people with bikes that do not already have lights, and they will only be given to individuals who bring their bikes to the site.  

Illinois law requires bikes to have front and rear bike lights, while operating at night. The front light must be a white light visible up to a distance of at least 500 feet, with a red reflector on the rear light visible from 100 to 600 feet, according to the report.