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The painted lines on a roadway make clear the path that should be taken by a four-wheeled vehicle. Still, a 2-wheeled motorcycle does not need that much space. That fact underscores the reason for laws about lane splitting.

What is lane splitting?

That is the act of riding between 2 different lanes of traffic. According to the California’s laws, the riders of motorcycles have the right to engage in the practice known as lane spitting.

Why is that practice allowed in California?

• It helps to reduce the level of traffic congestion.
• At times, it functions as a means for helping a motorcycle rider to avoid an accident.

What are the legal guidelines that riders must follow, if they elect to take advantage of the opportunity to engage in lane splitting?

You do not travel more than 10 miles per hour faster than the surrounding traffic. No lane splitting allowed when the surrounding traffic is moving forward at more than 30 miles per hour. It is best that you do not try to split lanes, when around large vehicles.

Avoid riding in another driver’s blind spot and try to use the far-left lanes. You should not ride on the shoulder of the road. It is best at night to wear bright clothing; try to wear something that can reflect the light, such as a fluorescent vest. You must consider the weather and roadway conditions before riding between 2 different lanes of traffic.

What sorts of conditions must be considered by a motorcyclist that has given thought to riding between 2 lanes of traffic?

• How wide are the lanes through which the traffic must pass, when a motorcycle rider is passing between the lanes designated for use by four-wheeled motor vehicles?
• How dense is the traffic?
• How large are the neighboring vehicles?
• How well is the roadway lighted?
• What are the chances that the roadway might cause a vehicle’s wheel to slide in a direction that is different from the one desired by the person sitting behind the steering wheel?

Why does a personal injury lawyer need to know the guidelines that pertain to motorcycle riders?

If a motorcyclist hires a personal injury lawyer in Hollister, in order to get compensated for injuries that were sustained while taking advantage of California’s lane splitting rules, then that same attorney needs to investigate the extent to which the injured rider followed the published guidelines.

For instance, was the rider’s injury the result of a failure to keep the motorcycle’s speed at an acceptable rate, or had that vehicle been moving faster than allowed, according to the guidelines? If the attorney’s motorcycle-riding client had been moving at an unsafe speed, then that fact would alter the strength of the same client’s case. In other words, that case would be weaker.

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