The spring and summer months are upon us in beautiful California. The days get longer and of course warmer. With the change in weather comes the inevitable urge for motorcyclists to get out and ride. As always, motorists need to be cautious of each other and make a conscientious effort to watch for motorcycles. It may be easier for you to see a traditional four-wheeled vehicle and predict their driving habits because you may be more familiar with them. Yet, motorcycles are present and have traffic capabilities that other vehicles do not, such as lane splitting. While these actions are perfectly legal and have many benefits, there are driving habits that may make lane splitting hazardous for our motorcyclists.
What Is Lane Splitting?
Lane splitting is the name given to the act of a motorcyclist maneuvering their motorcycle between two lanes of traffic driving in the same direction. Its purpose is to overtake or pass slower moving or stopped traffic. It is also known as “lane sharing”, “white lining”, “filtering” or “stripe riding”. These names are indicative of the motorcycle actually driving on or near the painted white line that separates two lanes of traffic traveling in the same direction.
Benefits of Allowing Lane Splitting
Those who are not familiar with motorcycle rules and regulations may have a hard time immediately understanding how this would be more beneficial than dangerous. There are several reasons why lane splitting is not outlawed in California, including that it:
California is one of the only states in the United States that permits lane splitting, and a guideline was released by the California Highway Patrol back in 2013. However, there are a few dangers that arise from the action, even with the most seasoned of motorcyclist. Most hazards arise from other vehicles on the road rather than the motorcyclist. Potential threats include:
Safe Practice Guidelines
As mentioned before, the California Highway Patrol put out a set of guidelines to follow to help make the practice of lane splitting safer for everyone on the roadway. If you choose to split lanes, protocols that may be useful in avoiding potential accidents include:
If you are the driver of a motorcycle and have been involved in a traffic incident while lane splitting, you may have sustained serious injuries and other damages. You may be having difficulty receiving assistance from the driver of the other vehicle and/or the insurance company involved. An experienced attorney can assist you in getting the help you deserve. Attorney John J. Garvey, III has over 40 years of personal injury litigation experience that can effectively be used in your situation. If you would like to speak to a San Jose motorcycle accident attorney, contact us today at 408-293-7777 for your free initial consultation.
While this website provides general information, it does not constitute legal advice. The best way to get guidance on your specific legal issue is to contact a lawyer. To schedule a meeting with the attorney, please call at 408-293-7777 or complete the intake form below.