Lane scare from passing car

GgarryP

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I've never seen this video before today and it was the first one to pop up when I searched lane splitting correctly

How and Why Motorcycle Lane Splitting is Safe and Good - /RideApart - YouTube
The video certainly expounds their opinions but includes no facts. Even the statistic about reduced rear end collisions is not attributed to lane splitting in the reports. It seems a logical conclusion but the riders don't mention lane splitting could contribute to accidents. The Wikipedia article says, "However lane-splitting riders who were involved in collisions were also more than twice as likely to rear-end another vehicle." Yikes! How can they justify lane splitting when the cyclists are hitting other vehicles?
Avoiding rear end collisions is easily done by checking mirrors when coming to a stop and having an escape route planned. So that is weak support for lane splitting. And there are not enough motorcycles to make a difference in congestion.
The best argument is that it saves the rider time. I can agree with that but the added risk and reduced safety margin just seems too big for the benefit.
I confess I live where it's not really a consideration and I can't make a decision for others. But there's no rule that cagers must leave room for lane splitting. Many riders take too many chances. This is more about being willing to take chances than about riding safely.

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potter0o

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I have done a fair bit of travelling. Lane splitting is very common especially in Asia. At the time of posting this I am in Taiwan. Cars are smaller, lights are timed so no sensors, speeds are slower on average except the highway and many areas have scooter specific lanes here.

I live in an area where lane splitting is not legal. I don't lane split as a general rule. The exception for me is if traffic is crawling/stopped on the way home from work I have been known to drive along the shoulder to pass whatever the bottle neck is. If a police officer was in the area his role would be to discourage me from that action with a ticket. I can see the merit in both arguments. Anything is possible in a perfect world but we live in reality. I would like to lane split on occasion when traffic is moving slowly. I don't expect to see it in my area in my lifetime... but is sure would be nice if I could :)
 

SergeantChuck

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I'm one of those that would probably not lane split if it was legal in Arkansas. It almost feels like the semi-truck to four wheeled car ratio is 1:1. The lanes really do not compensate for the big rigs width so it really wouldn't be safe. I did not see any big rigs in that video (could have missed one). Maybe, if I wasn't fighting so much large truck traffic, I might try it.

As for the OP, good on you for staying alert. There is no way you can plan for erratic drivers other than staying ultra alert and mentally "What Ifing" every vehicle encounter on the road. I try not to ride along side vehicles but you cannot always control that so I try to get further up in their peripheral.
 

davidc83

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I don't have a problem with lane splitting in Cali, or anywhere else. I just wouldn't do it. I couldn't ever get enough experience doing it to feel comfortable. The only time I would need to use it here in Louisville would be during heavy rush hour traffic (which I get to work and leave before the heavy starts) or accidents but the lanes on the Interstates in Louisville are not wide enough to be conducive for lane splitting, and the left emergency lane on most of the Interstates in/around Louisville are practically none existent (narrower than our bikes) and there is too much trash/blown out tires in the right emergency lane to ride without causing damage to the bike or bike tires.
 

rippin209

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I don't have a problem with lane splitting in Cali, or anywhere else. I just wouldn't do it. I couldn't ever get enough experience doing it to feel comfortable. The only time I would need to use it here in Louisville would be during heavy rush hour traffic (which I get to work and leave before the heavy starts) or accidents but the lanes on the Interstates in Louisville are not wide enough to be conducive for lane splitting, and the left emergency lane on most of the Interstates in/around Louisville are practically none existent (narrower than our bikes) and there is too much trash/blown out tires in the right emergency lane to ride without causing damage to the bike or bike tires.
Yeah don't ride where car don't drive, it's illegal (I don't know of any exceptions to that) and yeah your likely to get a flat or worse.
 

PapaC

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Lane splitting was floated here in Wa state, but didn't get far in legislation. It would be useful here in the Seattle area, where traffic is terrible, and not just at commute times. It was brought up that in Ca, the cage drivers are used to it, and watch for bikes when the traffic slows, and if started it would take drivers years before learning to be watchful for bikes lane splitting. If it were legal, I may do it if needed, I don't think I would feel to safe. I just retired, so thankfully don't have to commute any more, and can pick and choose my riding time. Glad you're OK OP. Stay safe everyone.
 

StratTuner

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Lane splitting sure looks risky to me, legal or not.

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It is risky, and when it goes badly, it makes your insurance go up at best and puts you in the hospital at worst....
that said....

Like you, I'm a very cautious rider..... but, I gave in finally because I noticed that the cars in the left most lane veer off to the left and open a lane for you! (especially when traffic stops dead.)

It's like they all had training on how to do it, and now they expect you to proceed.

Different Types of "lane splitting":

  • some riders like to lane split above 40 MPH. I don't. About then, I blend back in to the traffic.
  • Also, it's polite to watch for the speedsters behind you and blend back in to traffic to let them go by.
  • the best lane splitting happens below 40MPH behind a highway patrol motorcycle!

I note that it's polite to do a quick, two-finger point, at the driver who makes an especially good effort at opening the lane. It's a way to say "thank you".
 

Jos

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While splitting you want to keep both hands on the bar. I thank drivers by extending my legs. Well that's how we do it here ;)
 

Tiny Tim

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California being the only state that allows "lane splitting" or what ever you want to call it. My only concern is them making lane splitting illegal.
Bay area traffic sucks and a split lanes almost every time I ride. On the newer vehicles I see their side mirrors light up with a warning when I'm a vehicle length or two away, if the self driving cars are as sensitive as some by the book drivers or worse and they veer away or slam on their brakes it won't be long before the cries go out to ban lane splitting, or so is my concern.
So my only concern is legislative, I don't understand how lane splitting hasn't become legal across the country, lots of states looked like they were just about to make it ok but it's looked that way for years now. Making self driving vehicles mandatory or even standard I worry it will swing the opposite direction and they'll make laws more restrictive for motorcycles.
Seeing almost everyone in a cage playing with a cellphone not to mention those doped up on prescription meds, drunk, high or just inept it's hard to imagine self driving cars not doing a better job on average within the next few years. America's car culture is not what it used to be I'm just hoping motorcycle riders aren't next on the chopping block.
Here in the UK, lane splitting has been "legal" for some years - nationwide. I got the chance to discuss it with a Police Motorcyclist one day. We agreed that it's a manoeuver that should only be carried out on stationary or "slow moving" traffic. I asked him to define "slow moving. He took a moment and replied " If you're looking to drop your visor, it's too fast"

Personally, my rules are that if there's a space in another lane, then someone's going to make a dive for it. I sort of realise they're going to do it before they do.
 

Red Rider

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Here in the UK, lane splitting has been "legal" for some years - nationwide. I got the chance to discuss it with a Police Motorcyclist one day. We agreed that it's a manoeuver that should only be carried out on stationary or "slow moving" traffic. I asked him to define "slow moving. He took a moment and replied " If you're looking to drop your visor, it's too fast"

Personally, my rules are that if there's a space in another lane, then someone's going to make a dive for it. I sort of realise they're going to do it before they do.
That last part is what keeps ya from becoming a statistic
 

Hank

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“Please let me drive! I know I can drive better than half of these yahoos.”
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