Skip to comments.Arizona to Legalize Lane-Splitting, France to Ban it?
Posted on 03/31/2010 7:29:11 AM PDT by Dick Holmes
One barrier to widespread adoption of motorcycles as transportation in the USA is that of practical advantage. In most places, two-wheeled transport offers few advantages over the four-wheeled kind. That's partly because unlike almost every other country on Earth, the practice of "lane-splitting"-riding in between lanes of stopped or slow-moving vehicle traffic-is outlawed in what is allegedly the Home of the Free. That means that in every state but California, not only do motorcyclists have to endure the privations of motorcycle travel, they also have to bump along at the maddeningly slow pace of traffic-snarled trucks and automobiles, even though there is little evidence that the practice of lane-splitting (if done in a safe and reasonable fashion) is particularly dangerous.
So kudos to the Arizona legislature for honoring the Goldwater legacy of personal liberty tempered by individual responsibility with Arizona House Bill 2475. Introduced by Harley-Davidson-riding Representative Jerry Weiers (say "wires," R-District 12), the bill will legalize, for a one-year probationary period beginning January 1, 2011, lane-splitting in stopped traffic. It will only apply in counties with populations greater than 2 million (according to 2006 population estimates, this is just Maricopa county, with the Phoenix-Glendale-Scottsdale megalopolis). The bill sailed through the Transportation committee (which Weiers chairs) and the House Rules committee, and has been read to the State Senate as well. It's looking like there is little opposition to the bill so far, which makes sense: those who lean to the left should like the message of encouraging the lower environmental impact of motorcycle transportation, and those on the right should appreciate the individual-rights angle.
(Excerpt) Read more at motorcycledaily.com ...
This is a very dangerous maneuver, and I would not lane-split.
The masses of motorists are simply not smart enough, talented enough, focused enough or even awake enough to be around motorcycles. This is something I remember everytime I mount up - Stay AWAY FROM THOSE CARS.
Lane Splitting is a mind-bending risk that isn’t worth it. If you’re in traffic on a motorcycle, you chose the wrong route.
Rather than causing another person a lifetime of guilt, if a person wants to be an organ donor, they should just go to an emergency room, inform the staff that they are an organ donor and commit suicide.
“The masses of motorists are simply not smart enough, talented enough, focused enough or even awake enough to be around motorcycles”
I’d say the vast majority of motorcyclists are not smart enough to do this safely
I’m not in favor of “Lane Splitting”. It can be hard enough to switch lanes in heavy traffic without worrying about a motorcycle in between lanes. Any type of vehicle that rides on the road should follow the same laws.
“...The masses of motorists are simply not smart enough, talented enough, focused enough or even awake enough to be around motorcycles...”
....not to mention young enough...a Harley friend of mine just wrecked...I asked him “what happened”....he said “I’m 60 and I just don’t have the reflexes I had when I started riding at 19”
Someone lane-split in Atlanta traffic and knocked my mirror off of the passenger side of my car. Needless to say, I don’t like this idea because too many morons can’t judge the distance between cars.
And if some poor sap in a stopped car happens to stick his arm out the window? Whaaap! Boooom! Awwwwww!
I saw one of these organ donors first hand. Idiot popped a wheelie in heavy traffic. Car turned in front of him as they weren’t expecting him to be going 80 mph or that his headlight would be pointed up in the air.
He ended up under the front wheels of the car. Young lady got out to see him sticking out from under her car and completely lost it. I’d imagine she’s still in therapy.
Lane splitting will get you killed.
Years ago I was riding into Boston. Got stuck in bumper to bumper traffic just at the entrance to the old South Station tunnel. Guy on a rice burner flies by ‘tween lanes. Runs smack into the rear of a cab changing lanes and gets launched over 5-6 cars. Bike — wrecked; rider — wrecked.
I could not agree more, you have no room to maneuver or time to do so. Everything from people opening their car doors, pedestrians jaywalking or last moment lane changes would all be catastrophic.
I had two guys lane split between me and another truck on a Dallas freeway. We were doing 80 and these idiots musta been doing 120.
When you split lanes and die as a result, you can bet it will be the four wheeler’s fault.
I started riding in CA 40-some years ago, split lanes
constantly and never had a problem. I found getting rear-ended or being cut off a far more common experience.
In some states they would need to change more than the law though. In Texas for example, the car drivers take it personally when a motorcycle tries to slip by and will
often try to cut him off or even open a door. Once had
a pissed off cau-boi wannabe stalk me for 7 miles up I-35
for daring to pass him on the right while he was on the phone.
I like your screen name!
I ride, and I agree with you 100%. Even a 15mph wreck — say someone is lane splitting at that speed and a car in front of them edges over to change lanes or a driver sticks their arm out their window — can do REAL damage to both the rider and the car (and possibly the car driver).
I remember in CA, riders would split lanes at about 40 mph. When you are sitting stuck in traffic and a bike blows past you at that speed, it’s quite startling! Also, in the summer heat, people would stick their arms out their windows or even open their doors (happened all the time on LA freeways that got completely stuck for a while).
Saw that years ago on a highway in NH. Same speeds except 5 riceburners. The amazing result was a few a miles down the road a NH state trooper had them all pulled to the side.
Motorcyclists and bicyclists should make up their minds. Either ride on the road and follow the same rules as cars, or stay off the road altogether.
now that seems sensible