CHP forced to remove lane-splitting guidelines...

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by vaara, Jul 21, 2014.

  1. Navy Chief

    Navy Chief Long timer

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    The problem is you are looking at this from the wrong perspective. There are no laws on the books in California prohibiting lane splitting, this means that this is a legal practice. No "underground regulations: were created, there is no need to create a law or regulation allowing something, only to prohibit it....:deal
    #21
  2. Mike Vaughan

    Mike Vaughan Jagermeister

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    Only you, and other sophists thought they were rules or regulations, cite able by a peace officer. Everyone else follows the laws of DMV vehicle code and can decipher the apparently ambiguous "guidelines".

    Hopefully 'crossing the street when it's safe' is in the code and not just another suggestion, or you may be white knighting yet another job trainer.
    #22
  3. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    You may be right, but I am aware about the legislation, or rather, and critically, the lack of it, surrounding lane splitting in CA. And it seems to be that it's that very "non-existence" of legislation that is protecting it.

    So you believe, and hey! you may be correct, that the claim that the posted guidelines didn't constitute "underground regulation"?

    The CHP and OAL, and Mander* of course, however, did believe it to be "underground regulation". Here's their statement.

    "Some have interpreted the recently published Motorcycle Lane Splitting Guidelines as rules, laws or regulations that could or would be enforced by the department," according to a CHP statement. "The guidelines were never intended for this purpose and were prepared simply as common sense traffic safety tips and to raise public awareness."

    The Office of Administrative Law sided with Mandler*, noting that CHP Commissioner J. A. Farrow certified that his department would not "issue, use, enforce, or attempt to enforce the public education information." The OAL determined that posting the guidelines on the website was "issuing" them.


    *Mander was the guy who lodged the complaint.

    So, again, you guys need to be thanking him for, in his own indirect way, protecting lane-splitting, instead of maligning him.

    I do think it's a shame they had to be taken down from the CHP site (they're still on the AMA site btw) but the reasons for it appear to be valid, IF, and I stress IF, you think about the bigger picture and the rather weird/unique way in which US law works.

    If someone is so blinkered and can only see the removal of the guidelines and nothing else, well, that's their issue.
    #23
  4. Navy Chief

    Navy Chief Long timer

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    Not sure if it is unique or unusual, but in the US if it is not prohibited by law or regulation then is legal. It seems that the opposite would become extremely cumbersome after a period of time, imaging having to write laws and regulations defining everything is legal to do.. Do we need a law saying that it is okay to purchase a bottle of water while at the gas station, or can we assume from the lack of a law prohibiting it that it is fine. :deal

    This is why it is legal in California to lane split, there are no laws on the books regarding it. The other 49 states do have laws that specifically prohibit it unfortunately.
    #24
  5. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    I was actually referring to the way each state legislates such things, rather than doing it on a nationwide basis.

    Thanks for highlighting my point about how some folk are short-sighted.

    Oh, and

    :rofl
    #25
  6. pretbek

    pretbek Long timer

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    See, now that is a well argued and informative point you make.

    Why don't you start with posts like this one, and omit the argumentative nitpicking? That way you don't sound like a troll half of the time and people would be more willing to actually read your arguments and follow your train of thought.
    #26
  7. DudeClone

    DudeClone Long timer

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    catweasal you are wrong about this and have little and no idea of our politics or law in our country, or my state

    i assure you the person who brought this action has no interest in protecting our rights, lane splitting, or anything else and is a self involved, self serving, politically motivated a-hole who wants to further his puny career by any tiny means necessary. and this "issue" was most likely his easiest target because really, who the hell is going to care but some of us who ride?

    unless this person RIDES he can kiss my ass. and if he does ride he can kiss it twice
    #27
  8. daveinva

    daveinva Been here awhile

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    I'm actually pretty familiar with the concept of "hidden law," and I agree with the posters here who criticize it. Laws must be fair, universal and knowable in order to be just.

    That said, if it's not illegal, it *is* legal-- or it ought to be, at least.

    I believe the problem with lane splitting not being specified in law is that when the CHP puts regulations on how to do safe lane splitting, the question then turns to, what recourse do they have to counter unsafe lane splitting? Since there's no legal definition of safe lane splitting, how can there be a legal definition of unsafe lane splitting to justify traffic enforcement? When CHP tries to write you a ticket, it could be contestable because it's a judgment area, not a question of written law. And there should be no judgment areas in understanding of the law.

    It's not so much that lane splitting is unclear, it's the fact that you could-- or perhaps could not, it's police whim, so who knows?-- get in trouble for doing something wrong when you are not told in the law how you can do it right.

    Bottom line? This guy was a twit who I would like to slap in the head, but the twit had a larger philosophical point I happen to agree with. Personally, I see no harm in CA crafting an actual, written lane-splitting law. If anything, it's probably a *very good* thing for riders nationwide, as having a law on the books then gives other states something concrete to emulate and pass. No other U.S. state is going to eliminate laws against lane splitting and leave it in legal limbo like California does today, but if there's an actual, enforceable written law in place, we riders might be able to get more states to move on this, someday.
    #28
  9. KGBz

    KGBz Been here awhile

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    I understand the claim of underground regulation, and it does make sense. But to take away the one guideline that riders in Cali have to follow regarding procedural lane splitting and replace it with nothing, does not make sense...unless of course the CHP is trying to cover their @sses.

    In their shoes: What if they were to get sued by someone killed while following the guidelines on lane splitting.

    The proper way to handle this is to define lane splitting for 2-wheeled vehicles in the code and outline where, when, and how it should be done.
    #29
  10. KGBz

    KGBz Been here awhile

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    You basically agree with me!:1drink
    #30
  11. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    I'm gonna turn that around on you. I read the post, looked up "underground regulation", realised it's implications, read the CHP release on the issue, formed an opinion and posted it.

    I didn't detail my thought process (at first), or write down how I got from A to Z (zed) because I didn't (and don't) consider it to be that much of a difficult concept to grasp....assuming folks had read beyond the original post, didn't just take it at face value and were capable of forming their own conclusions rather than thoughtlessly leaping on a bandwagon.

    Now, if my assumption that the majority of folks here are intelligent, free-thinking and capable of independent thought was incorrect then please let me know and I'll start dumbing down my posts...well, OK, I won't, but it'll certainly explain quite a lot.
    #31
  12. windblown101

    windblown101 Long timer

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    So you're saying you are in favor of following the letter of the law versus the intent of law?

    I disagree.

    Life and circumstances are far to complex to put into print an absolute law for every possible scenario life can throw at us. As legislators continue to strive to cover every possible scenario in print the laws become hopelessly complex and often conflict one another. Any law has intent as it's basis. It is the intent, not our rather poor ability to express that intent into the written word that matters.

    There are times when one might break the letter of the law law in order to save someone from harm. Should that person be even be charged much less convicted?

    Let's say I'm walking down the street and see a house on fire and hear a baby crying inside. The front door is locked and a break it down and enter the home to get the kid out. By the letter of the law I'm guilty of breaking and entering, hell, maybe even kidnapping. We will always need at apply judgement to any written law in order to be a just society.
    #32
  13. Vacman

    Vacman Some call me...Tim?

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    I get what you're saying and I happen to agree with you, so let me put things to you in simpler terms. Stop coming off like a pretentious tool and people will like you better.
    #33
  14. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    Except that I'm not really here to make friends...I'm here to express my opinions.

    Also, maybe I am, in actual fact, a pretentious tool :D
    #34
  15. Vacman

    Vacman Some call me...Tim?

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    Fair enough. Carry on then. :D
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  16. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    Very kind of you :evil
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  17. filmfan

    filmfan Long timer

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    Does the CHP publish guidelines for any other aspect of driving? For example, maybe like driving in the rain ,or low-visibility situations? The point being that just like with lane-splitting or at any other time, you can be ticketed for not driving safely in the officer's estimation, even though what you're doing is otherwise legal.
    #37
  18. Andrew

    Andrew Optimus Primer Super Moderator

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    :clap

    This is great news, I could not be more pleased. The "guidelines" were absolutely a backdoor route to regulation, and had the terrible effect of leading many to think that Lane-Splitting was now legal and codified.

    The legal status of lane-splitting in California is very simple:

    Lane-Splitting is not illegal.

    It's not defined in the state vehicle code, and that's just fine by me. What is defined are various measures of unsafe vehicle operation. The CHP guidelines were dangerous in that they created the expectation in cage drivers that motorcyclists were now somehow subject to follow those exact guidelines, which is not the case at all.

    Under current law, which makes no mention of lane-splitting, I can filter/lane-split at speeds and in conditions that I feel comfortable with. Likewise, LE can pull me over when, in their opinion, I have been riding in an unsafe manner. That's a somewhat ambiguous situation, but one I can definitely live with. And if the vehicle code is going to be changed, to address lane-splitting, then let it be changed and codified out in the open, in a binding and legal manner.
    #38
  19. Rgconner

    Rgconner Long timer

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    With his name published, he will not get much sleep from now on, and he better not leave his car unattended anywhere in Sacramento.
    #39
  20. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    You want to know why being "snide" comes so easily to me Navy Chief. See below. Some of you guys make it so easy, it's like shooting fish in a barrel.

    #40