While California may be a very motorcycle-friendly state in terms of the motorcyclists’ ability to ride virtually every day of the year thanks to the incredible year-round weather, there’s no denying the fact that in many areas, motorcyclists run into the very same traffic problems that the rest of us experience. Unlike those of us in automobiles, motorcyclists have adopted a practice that infuriates some drivers—that of lane-splitting. In lane-splitting, a motorcyclist can bypass long stretches of bumper-to-bumper traffic by directing his or her motorcycle between the lanes.
Although despised by people in automobiles, there are currently no laws against the practice of lane-splitting by those on motorcycles. However, that may be about to change in the state of California, as lawmakers consider a new proposal that would simultaneously put limits on the practice while also legalizing it. This would make California the first state in the union to legalize lane-splitting by motorcycles.
Lane-splitting is fundamentally dangerous, since vehicles that do not see the motorcycle coming could change lanes in an instant and cause potentially serious injuries. According to lawmakers, this proposal would put speed restrictions in place that could curb the number of potential accidents.
Specifically, the proposal would restrict lane-splitting to speeds no higher than 15 miles per hour greater than the surrounding traffic. Furthermore, there would be a cap at 50 miles per hour for lane-splitting.
Motorists who already despise the practice by motorcyclists believe that the practice is dangerous enough and that legalizing it in any fashion may put them at risk of being blamed for an accident that, at least in their eyes, should be blamed on those doing the lane-splitting.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident that was caused by another motorist, do the responsible thing and discuss your case with an experienced personal injury attorney. The law contains many nuances and it is best to let a reliable legal team handle your case, especially when there will be highly experienced insurance companies looking to get you to settle as quickly as possible without the benefit of counsel. Knowing all your legal options is crucial in making informed decisions and getting the greatest amount of compensation from those parties that need to be held accountable.