URBANA —Volunteers will install as many as 1,200 sets of free bicycle lights at two University of Illinois campus locations Thursday afternoon and evening.
The Campus Areas Transportation Study education subcommittee will hold a "Light the Night" event from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday at Wright and Green streets, near the site of the Alma Mater statue, and at Lincoln Avenue and Illinois Street, near the Illinois Street Residence Hall.
Teams of volunteers, including volunteer police officers and others from the Bike Project of Urbana-Champaign, Champaign County Bikes, C-U Safe Routes to School Project and Planet Bike, will install the bicycle lights and educate bicyclists about laws that require bikes to have lights at night.
Bikes will be equipped with front and rear lights. The equipment only will be installed on bicycles without lights; lights will not be given to individuals.
The lights are being provided by the Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District, the cities of Champaign and Urbana and the University of Illinois.
The purpose of the campaign, organizers say, is to improve the visibility of bicyclists at night while educating riders about the safety benefits of a bicycle light and the state requirement for a front and rear bike light when operating a bike at night.
State law says that a bike must be equipped with a lamp on the front able to emit a white light visible from a distance of at least 500 feet, and with a red reflector on the rear visible from 100 to 600 feet. A lamp emitting a red light visible from a distance of 500 feet to the rear may be used in addition to the red reflector.