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Old 02-08-2013, 12:00 AM   #13
Road Warrior
Jedi5150's Avatar
Joined: Jul 2007
Location: Central California
Oddometer: 626
Originally Posted by Andrew View Post
So much bullshit. A set of guidelines is not law.

There is no law in California that sets lane-splitting to be illegal. Go ahead and do it, LEO will pull you over if they have a mind to, and will cite you for whatever they like - unsafe lane change, probably, or excessive speed - if that's the mood they're in.
As a habitual lanesplitter and an LEO, I can comment on what you wrote with more than a bit of experience. While you are not wrong that an LEO can cite you for something if you are lanespilitting unsafely, it is not super likely. The biggest reason why is public safety. You think I'm joking, but the truth is that if you're lanesplitting, it's because traffic is moving slowly. Driving "code 3" (what lights and sirens is called in California) is dangerous under the best of circumstances. Cops are not very likely to try to part heavy traffic in a Crown Vic to chase after a lane splitting motorcycle. In the 11 years I've been working the streets I have never once pulled over a lane splitting motorcyclist, and I've seen plenty of very reckless ones. It just becomes even more reckless trying to catch the bike. Now if the cop is on a motorcycle, forget everything I just said.

As for the "guidelines", keep in mind that the basic speed law needs no posted speed limit to be enforceable. You can cite someone for the basic speed law if they are lanesplitting too agressively simply by articulating why their speed was unsafe for the conditions present. I think CHP put out these guidelines as a way of giving motorcyclists a head's up as to what is generally acceptable...kind of like the yellow "recommended night-time speed for turns" signs. No, they aren't law, but if you go above them you better be able to articulate why driving faster than the recommendation was perfectly safe.

I almost always get waves in my patrol car from motorcyclists who are lanesplitting because I always swing out to give them more room. I like it when people do it on my bike so I excercize the same respect when not on the bike.
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