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Bikers and Auto Drivers Split On Lane Sharing.

7709 Views 39 Replies 26 Participants Last post by  alpies
In SoCal, where the weather permits year round riding, a motorcycles full potential can be used if commuting is it's primary use as is my case.

I ride 100 miles round trip daily on a Buell XB and find myself frequently having to split lanes because of heavy traffic buildup with the vehicle flow resembling a accordion. The sudden stops can be deadly to a unprotected 2 wheeler as the distracted driver behind may react too late to avoid slamming into the rider.

I have been lane splitting for over 40 years and any close encounters of the worst kind have been rare, it requires 100% focus on what everyone is doing and being prepared for sloppy driving.

If lane splitting is disallowed in CA I will most likely commute in a car as the only real advantage a motorcycle has is it's maneuverability; the fuel mileage, maintenance cost or comfort do not put a motorcycle at any great advantage over a automobile.
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My problem with "lane sharing" aka "lane splitting" is I DEMAND gages to give me a full lane width when I'm traveling on any given highway. I don't want to allow them to pass me by just moving over a little and force me to stay in the right wheel track. Then how can I not recipricate by not forcing them to "share their lane"?? And if a gage changes lanes and causes an accident by not seeing a motorcycle "sharing lanes", WHO IS AT FAULT? Well, bet it will simply depend on how good the motorcyclist's lawyer is, or the mood the judge is in, depending on severity of injuries (to the motorcyclist, that is).
"If lane splitting is disallowed in CA I will most likely commute in a CA".. I am surprised you say that..since don't motorcycles have use of the HOV lane? Or is the HOV lane becoming clogged like 405 up here in Seattle/Bellevue WA does during rush hour?
I figure in the initial cost of the vehicle as well as routine costs. I've never spent more than $2500 for a bike I use to commute. The $15K difference between the cost of a bike and a decent car more than makes up for the high cost of bike tires.
The HOV lanes are clogged in SoCal during peak traffic periods.

Has anyone gotten a ticket anywhere for going between lanes at a stop light? I do it all the time now, and I don't think I'll be able to stop when I move out of California.
Lane splitting(sharing) legal in Germany? I tried it while I was stationed there, and got a lot of cager rage directed at me!

I can find lots of decent cars (Well, decent by MY standards!) for $2500!
I try to keep the lane splitting to a minimum when the traffic is moving at all, because people in cars (myself included) make snap decisions about what lane they want to be in, and a motorcycle can disappear all to easily into a blind spot. When things come to a halt, I just motor slowly up to the front of the line. Pissing cagers off, in this situation, is just icing on the cake.
It's interesting to note that the only place in the entire WORLD where lane sharing is illegal is in our 49 states -- not including California.

Splitting isn't legal in Australia (which makes the article's mention of it a bit strange).

Everyone does it, of course, but since it's not expressly allowed, technically the rider is guilty of an illegal passing maneuver (or illegal usage of a bike lane, etc). However, I think you only really have to worry if a) the copper is an arsehole (although admittedly that covers most of them) or b) you're doing something stupid (like zipping up between stopped traffic at 60km/h or riding between cars on the freeway at 110km/h).

There have been a few attempts to create specific legislation making lane splitting illegal, but I don't think any of them have actually been passed - but, ultimately, it's impossible to do it without breaking some other road rule.
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"...the fuel mileage, maintenance cost or comfort do not put a motorcycle at any great advantage over a automobile."

...sure, if you're driving a fire-breathing buell xb. if you're driving a small cruiser such as a virago 250 or suzuki whathaveyou, then maintenance costs and gas mileage are definitely an advantage. possibly even a comfort advantage if lane splitting continues to be legal.

i do, however, agree with you in that if lane splitting were outlawed, it might be better to just get a small economical japanese car and enjoy the long lines with some A/C and good tunes - because to me (who lives in a very congested city as well), the ability to lane split and save commute time is the biggest advantage for a bike.
seriously, what is with people getting angry if you lane split at a light (i live in austria and get the same cager rage)? your bike isn't going to slow them down any...i guess there's just some primal pride thing about being out-accelerated. hmmm.
"I have lane split in at least 15 states without a problem although I do keep a close eye out for cops."

I would advise that you don't try it in Chicago. The cops will be the last thing you need to worry about.
?????? Explanation please.
The last "cheap" car I bought eneded up costing a lot more to keep running than the last few "cheap" motorcycles.

Definition 1:

F*cking Illinois Bastards –

Just pronounced as fib by Wisconsinites referring to people from Illinois, how they drive and act. They drive really fast at home but slower than an old lady with a walker when they’re vacationing in Wisconsin and don’t know were they’re going.

In Use:

I got cut off by some FIB while I was driving on the I.

Definition 2:

F*cking Illinois Bastards or occasionally, F*cking Illinois B!tches. Shortened to the acronym "FIB."

It is an unkind term used by Wisconsinites to refer to the residents of Illinois. Common times to use this are:

1. In reference to how Illinoians Drive - very fast and offensive.

2. Their vacationing choices - Wisconsin Dells and Lake Geneva.

3. Bears Fans

In Use:

1. That FIB f*cking cut me off on 894!

2. FIBs are taking over the whole state in the summer!

3. When was the last time those FIBS won, 1985?

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Could be worse, I could be a Hoosier. Heheheh.

I think they don't notice you cuz they're trimming their mustaches (the women too).
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