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Lane Splitting Laws

Safety Tips for Lane Splitting

First before lane splitting, be sure that it is legal in your state.

You should also do it in a safe manner since it will reduce chances of an accident occurring. Lane splitting is only safe when there is slow traffic or the traffic is heavily congested. When the traffic is congested, it is much safer to lane split as compared to when the traffic isn’t congested. You should have special equipment on your motorcycle to ensure you are safe.

Ensure you have a helmet, gloves, boots, etc. Side mirrors are essential to ensure that you can see traffic which is behind you to avoid rear end crashes.

In case you are involved in a motorcycle accident, evidence that you ride your motorcycle in a safe manner will increase your chances of not being found at fault with a judge or insurance carrier.

Here are several tips that can help increase your safety:

  • Be alert when riding your motorcycle especially of the cars around you.
  • While riding ensure you are wearing reflective clothing and you have your headlights on
  • Be careful when riding in a vehicle’s blind spot.
  • When traffic speeds to more than 30 mph, get back into the lane
  • When two cars get too close together, honk! Slow down and only pass when the distance is safe between them.
  • When riding, look for signs when there can be changing of lanes. An easy sign can include when the driver is looking at the side mirror.

motorcycle lane splitting

Lane Splitting Laws For Motorcycles in California

Lane splitting is riding a motorcycle or a bicycle between lanes or rows of traffic that has stopped or which is moving slowly.

Lane splitting motorcycles save a lot of time on the part of the rider and reduces traffic congestion.

It has also been proven to be safe for motorcyclists (to drive between cars) since stopping behind other vehicles especially large ones may be dangerous.

Lane splitting is also be referred to as filtering, lane sharing, white lining or stripe-riding.

If you have any questions regarding a motorcycle accident you call Avrek at 866-598-5548.

Is Lane Splitting Legal?

Lane splitting is illegal in the United States except for only one state which is California, where it’s not Illegal. California allows motorcyclists to zip between lanes of cars on a motorcycle. When it is done in a prudent and safe manner, it is not illegal.

The meaning of “safe and prudent” is left to interpretation to judges and police officers. The law also provides that motorists shouldn’t discourage motorcycles from lane splitting.

According to CVC 2240, intentionally impeding or blocking a motorcyclist in a way that could cause harm is illegal.

People always ask can motorcycles drive between cars?

When It Is Not OK To Split Lane

  • When traffic is moving too fast or unpredictably
  • If dangerous road conditions exist (wet, dirt, etc.)
  • At a toll booth
  • On a curvy road
  • If you don’t feel safe
  • Between buses, RVs, etc.

Lane Splitting Statistics

According to the University of California, Berkeley motorcyclists who split lanes when there is heavy traffic are less likely to be struck by other motorists from behind.

They also suffer less head and torso injuries according to the American Motorcyclist Association.
According to the Safe Transportation Research and Education Center (SafeTREC), the main causes of motorcycle accidents while lane splitting are distracted and inattentive vehicle drivers and environmental conditions such as poor visibility.

According to U.C Berkeley:

  • Lane splitting is safe in traffic that is moving less than 50 mph and motorcyclists shouldn’t exceed the speed of the moving cars by 15 mph.
  • Motorcyclists who lane-split are likely to suffer head injuries more than those who don’t
  • Lane splitting motorcyclists are less likely to be rear ended as compared to those who don’t lane split.
  • 81 percent of lane-splitting motorcyclists wear a full face helmet as compared to those who don’t lane split.
  • Lane-splitting riders are less likely to be using alcohol.

Motorcycle lane splitting is common in many countries across the world especially highly urbanized areas such as Asia and Europe.

Lane splitting reduces accidents and traffic congestion and that is why it is a popular practice all over the world.

The American Motorcyclist Association supports lane splitting as long as it is safe.

Injuries Caused by Lane Splitting Accidents

Lane splitting accidents can be very dangerous and cause serious injuries in case there is a crash or a wreck.

These are some of the injuries that can occur:

If you suffered any injuries from a motorcycle accident don’t hesitate to contact the best motorcycle lawyers at Avrek 866-598-5548.

Who is Liable for Lane Splitting Accidents?

When an accident happens when a motorcycle is lane splitting, chances are high that the motorcyclists will be held liable. In other cases, it may be the fault of the driver but this is hard to prove.

When the court or the insurance adjuster finds that the motorcyclist was careless, the motorcyclists may not recover damages. It is up to the motorcycle rider to prove that the other driver contributed to the accident. If he or she is able to prove this, they can be able to get damages.

Examples of where a motorcyclist can be compensated is when the driver was distracted e.g. they were talking on the phone or the driver wasn’t paying attention.

It is always a good idea to schedule a consultation with one of our motorcycle accident attorneys to discuss your case and traffic laws that might be relevant.

It is upon the motorcyclists to prove the following to get a claim:

  • The motorcyclist was an experienced rider
  • The motorcyclist was riding carefully e.g. they were not weaving in and out of lanes or speeding
  • The motorcyclists has completed a motorcycle riding or safety course.
  • The driver in the car did something that was more dangerous than lane splitting.

This may include making an abrupt lane change without signaling or drifting from one lane into another.

What To Do After An Accident?

Once you are involved in a lane splitting accident, it is important that you contact a motorcycle accident lawyer in California before talking to anybody especially your insurance provider.

There are cases where insurance companies will use information that you shared with them against you. Ensure you also collect evidence from the scene of the accident.

This evidence includes the plate number of the car you were involved in an accident with, pictures of the scene and names and contact information of witnesses. Once you have gotten a medical checkup, ensure you go and make a police report. This will come in handy especially when you are dealing with your insurance provider.

Contact Avrek Law at 866-598-5548 for a free consultation and advice from our motorcycle accident lawyers.

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