California Highway Patrol Announces Motorcycle Lane Splitting Rules

Friday, February 15, 2013

California is the only state in the country where motorcycling spitting is legal, but until now, there were rules that advise motorcyclists about lane splitting. Now, that has changed. The California Highway Patrol recently decided to officially provide guidance for motorcyclists to perform this technique properly.

Lane splitting is the practice in which motorcyclists ride between cars in crowded areas. It has been a controversial technique, and many motorists have criticized the practice, even calling for a ban on it. However, lane splitting, as the practice is called, has been legal in California for years now. In January, the California Highway Patrol decided to finally offer motorcyclists official guidance about how to practice lane splitting safely, and responsibly. The guidance has been released after consultations with other California state agencies, as well as motorcycle rider groups.

The new guidance applies not just to city streets, but also to highways across California. The rules require that motorcyclists lane split at a speed of not more than 10 mph above the speed of the traffic around the motorcyclist. If the traffic around is moving at more than 30 mph, it is highly recommended that you avoid lane splitting.
Those are some of the simple rules included in the guidance, and to Los Angeles motorcycle accident lawyers, they seem very sensible.

The new rules also give California motorcyclists some guidance about riding safely, and not riding at excessive speeds. Motorcyclists in California have always been subjected to the threat of ticketing by the California Highway Patrol for driving at excessive speeds. However, the new rules provide specifics, and should be very useful in helping motorcyclists ride safely.


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