California Highway Patrol posts rules for legal lane-splitting by motorcyclists

Discussion in 'West – California, the desert southwest and whatev' started by brieninsac, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. Cpt. Ron

    Cpt. Ron Advrider #128

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    With this much attention, maybe there will be more focus on riders not following "The Protocol", which can lead to further complaints and demands from the public for more "enforcement". And then from there, political will to change the vehicle code.
    #21
  2. mikerd400

    mikerd400 Long timer

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    Possible, but I doubt it. In my 14 years on the job, not one thing has ever been said about motorcyclists lane splitting.
    #22
  3. wrk2surf

    wrk2surf on the gas or brakes

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    There are another few things they should clear up while they are at it..

    Running red lights after not registering your bike .. (wait a complete circut then go when safe)

    Passing on double yellow mtn roads following slow traffic ... (when safe to do so)
    #23
  4. bdarling

    bdarling Weatherman

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    It seems that I'm in the minority on this one, but I have never felt comfortable lane sharing. There have been too many close calls with drivers intentionally and unintentionally blocking me that I have decided lane sharing is just not worth the risk. I don't have anything against other riders splitting and I certainly don't think legislation should be passed to outlaw splitting, but I think many of us push the risk out of our conscious mind for the sake of convenience. Additionally, my GS handlebars happen to ride at the exact same height as every 1/2 ton through 1 ton pickup's mirrors, so splitting is always a squeeze.

    All of this said, I have taken advantage of the passing full-dress, straight pipe Harley blazing a trail for me. If he can fit, so can I!

    -B

    P.S. amen on this one!

    #24
  5. whutner

    whutner Adventurerer

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    I lane split whenever / wherever I want to and feel safe doing it. I even go past single lane traffic if its stopped. I'm not gonna sit and let my bike overheat and risk sitting there in traffic in what looks to other cars as free spot they can squeeze into if i can just cruise down the shoulder and skip past all that shit.

    I dgaf about the law unless there's a cop there looking at me. I do whatever I think the best move is.
    #25
  6. CA Stu

    CA Stu Thanks Super Moderator

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    Lane "sharing" is a good thing.

    Thanks
    CA Reasonable and Prudent :D
    #26
  7. JAZ by the Bay

    JAZ by the Bay Bus driver

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    Might also be the opposite. It's a reasonable guideline and by having some actual rules surrounding lanesplitting the general right to split is more secure. Inclusio unius est exclusio alterius.
    #27
  8. StevefrmGV

    StevefrmGV MotoBro's RetroCycle's

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    I commuted for two years, year round on a bike when i lived in the Grey Area , Hwy 580 to Oakland and back to the tri-valley. I had people try and kill me. Once between two semis. I will never will split between big rigs again, way too scary. I have dodged coffee, doors, newspapers and spit. I have had the lane splitting conversation with Mr. CHP before and they always said the same thing, Its up to the discretion of the officer whether they think you are riding safely or not.
    My biggest concern these days is cell phone talkers. Keep your eyes out and ride safe.
    Steve
    #28
  9. BlueBlazerIrregular

    BlueBlazerIrregular Bike Punk

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    As someone who works on the reactive side of the injury with a badge, I have picked up CHP on city streets AND the Highway, specifically the BAY BRIDGE WB before Treasure Island. Every CHP on a bike has told me, after me telling them I ride my motorcycle to the station EVERYDAY, including the rainy days; "the safest place for us to be is lane splitting. Between the cars, NOT in front or in back of them". And EVERY CHP, and city cop on a bike, that was put in the back of the ambulance by me, was NOT because of lane splitting, rather for inattentive drivers stopping for no reason or NOT stopping when they should. That all being said, it is only over a decade of 911 duty in Alameda county and SF, I'm sure there are others who have different stories, just assume that all the drivers are going to make a mistake, they might spill their coffee on the new seat, but you might spill your blood on the new road. The "guidelines" are only that, a guide.
    #29
  10. dman

    dman Been here awhile

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    Berkeley native and UCB grad here. I split lanes and I don't have flowers on my bikes (ADV stickers, yes). Traffic on I-80 through Berkeley is so backed up 24/7 that lane-splitting is a necessity.

    Seriously, the best thing about this new policy is the exposure it got in the papers and on TV. Hopefully that will remind the car drivers that it is safe and legal.

    -dman
    #30
  11. dman

    dman Been here awhile

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    +1 :d
    #31
  12. francisthepig

    francisthepig Dances with Lurkers

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    http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/postquery?bill_number=sb_350&sess=CUR&house=B&author=beall

    LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST
    SB 350, as introduced, Beall. Vehicles: motorcycles.
    (1) Existing law requires, when a roadway has been divided into two or more clearly marked lanes for traffic in one direction, among other things, that a vehicle be driven as nearly as practical entirely within a single lane and prohibits the vehicle from being moved from the lane until that movement can be made with reasonable safety. A violation of the Vehicle Code is a crime.
    This bill would prohibit, with an exception for a peace officer, as provided, a person operating a motorcycle from passing another vehicle in a portion of a lane occupied by that vehicle unless certain conditions are met, including that the passing occurs during traffic congestion, and the passing occurs at a safe speed. Because the failure to comply with these provisions would constitute an infraction under the Vehicle Code, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
    (2) The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
    This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
    ________________________________________________________________________________
    Digest Key
    Vote: MAJORITY Appropriation: NO Fiscal Committee: YES Local Program: YES

    Bill Text
    The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

    SECTION 1.Section 21658.5 is added to the Vehicle Code, to read:

    21658.5.(a) Notwithstanding any other law, and except as provided in subdivision (b), when a highway has been divided into three or more clearly marked lanes for traffic traveling in the same direction, a person operating a motorcycle shall not pass another vehicle in a portion of a lane occupied by that vehicle unless the following conditions are met:
    (1) The passing occurs during traffic congestion.
    (2) The passing occurs at a safe speed.
    (b) This section does not apply to a peace officer in the performance of official duties.

    SEC. 2.No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIIIB of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIIIB of the California Constitution
    #32
  13. Andrew

    Andrew Optimus Primer Super Moderator

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    Fuckers. An outright ban on splitting when only two lanes in a direction? :ruskie

    And, please... define "congested" :lol3

    Note as a bonus the pandering to CHP and local LE agencies. :csm
    #33
  14. K. L. Rocket

    K. L. Rocket Big bouncy make big happy

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    Sounds like surveys, guidelines and studies are not intended to reinforce the status quo. :deal


    #34
  15. Andrew

    Andrew Optimus Primer Super Moderator

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    Looks like SB 350 needs to be defeated. :deal

    Before getting all bent out of shape, here's a good brief on the path any bill takes through the legislature:

    http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=591209

    There will be many opportunities to comment, in person and through faxes, emails, and phone calls.
    Is BARF highlighting this thing yet? I didn't see it in a quick review of the threads.
    #35
  16. francisthepig

    francisthepig Dances with Lurkers

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    One could argue that with the right language, this could be a good thing. It makes lane sharing legal and it's on the books. Right now someone else could come out with a bill that makes it illegal no matter what.
    Imagine if California had a law on the books that actually spelled out how and when lane sharing is legal. Other states could take that language and use it to get similar bills passed.

    I agree right now it is still vague and not quite to my liking, but at least it isn't a bill that outlaws lane sharing outright.
    #36
  17. Andrew

    Andrew Optimus Primer Super Moderator

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    As initially proposed, it outlaws lane-splitting on roads with fewer than three lanes. WTF? Status quo is far preferable.

    I will do my part to defeat this legislation.
    #37
  18. Aprilia

    Aprilia Long timer

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    I lane split for nearly 15yrs while living in the Bay Area. My job had me going from location to location every day....my mileage was anywhere from 100-200 miles a day. Most of that was while splitting traffic. You quickly learn to read other drivers and when/when not to split. I had a few close calls the first year but after that I found it far safer to be splitting. BTW...even did a couple years using a K1200LT. :evil
    #38
  19. Surj

    Surj Deadwood Original

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    I just posted a summary on BARF and a deeper analysis on LaneSplittingIsLegal.com here - a site I launched to help publicize the CHP guidelines.

    I agree with you, as do some of the experts I've spoken with. The three lane thing makes this bill a big loser, but the other part, basically "split when it's congested, if you can do it safely" is not that far from what we have right now, in that it's super ambiguous and open to interpretation by LEOs.
    #39
  20. MeterPig

    MeterPig Meh

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    It already is legal.
    #40