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“Lane Splitting” Legalization Gives Motorcyclists More Rights

Posted on in Personal Injury

California accident attorney, California injury lawyerLast fall, California legalized lane splitting, the practice in which motorcyclists pass stopped or slow-moving cars by riding along the lane line. California is the first state to recognize and allow lane splitting.

Under the new law, California Highway Patrol will be able to set specific regulations concerning how a motorcyclist can safely lane split. While these specifics have not been made public, it is believed that CHP could potentially make regulations on the following:

  • Speed limits for lane splitting. For example, motorcyclists could not drive more than 10 mph than traffic and should never exceed 30 miles per hour.
  • Where lane splitting can take place. For example, motorcyclists should not lane split at exits and merge points.

The assemblyman who proposed the bill said that the bill aims to reduce traffic congestion while making the roads safer.

Motorcyclists Have Rights

Many people are under the false impression that a motorcyclist assumes the risk of driving a motorcycle even when in an accident where the other driver is at fault. Some people believe that motorcyclists should be blamed in accidents because they are harder to see on the road.

These beliefs are untrue under California law. In fact, in most motorcycle accidents involving another vehicle, it is the other vehicle who is at fault. Car drivers are obligated to share the road and to be on the lookout for motorcycles, but many fall short and gravely injure law-abiding motorcyclists.

The new law will help those motorcyclists who get into an accident while lane splitting. Before this law was in place, a car driver may have been able to argue that a lane splitting motorcyclist was acting unreasonably and was at fault.

Now that the law has been enacted, it will be assumed that lane splitting cannot be the cause of the accident, so long as it is done in accordance with the CHP rules.

Contact a San Jose, CA Motorcycle Accident Attorney

Motorcycle accidents can leave riders with serious injury or can be fatal. If you have been in such an accident, hiring a skilled attorney can ensure that your case is handled with your best interests in mind. We aggressively fight for those who have been wounded in motorcycle accidents. Contact the San Jose motorcycle accident lawyers at Jachimowicz Law Group at 408-246-5500 to learn what a skilled personal injury attorney thinks about your case.

 

Sources:

http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160AB51

http://www.latimes.com/politics/essential/la-pol-sac-essential-politics-updates-california-becomes-first-step-to-1471635067-htmlstory.html

http://sacramento.cbslocal.com/2016/12/27/motorcycle-lane-splitting-becoming-a-reality-in-california-with-chp-guidelines/

 

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