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  1. #1
    Senior Member LWB_guy's Avatar
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    What is "lane-splitting" ?

    I just started reading the thread What "Exactly" is VC? and realize "VC" is the way I have always cycled in traffic (at least up until reading JoeyBike's Red Light Running Tutorial Video. )

    joejack951 said not to do lane-splitting, in order to ride VC. Somebody else said it's illegal in some states.

    What is "lane splitting" ?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Driving between two traffic lanes - with traffic on either side - most commonly done when traffic is slower, but can also be done when it is faster too.
    It is illegal in most US states, maybe all except CA? It is legal in several other countries.
    Al
    Last edited by noisebeam; 08-08-08 at 06:30 PM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member LWB_guy's Avatar
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    Oh you mean riding on the double-yellow line atop two-lane two-way paved roads? I do that all the time when there's no traffic. It's the smoothest part of the road.

  4. #4
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    I should have said that splitting is almost always considered to be done between two same direction lanes.

    Al

  5. #5
    Senior Member LWB_guy's Avatar
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    Oh, I see. Thanks, Al.

  6. #6
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    well, you can definetly split on the yellow stripes as well.

  7. #7
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist View Post
    well, you can definetly split on the yellow stripes as well.
    Thats fine with me as inclusive in the definition. But in my mind that is more like overtaking, especially if any part of you or bike is on the wrong way side, but yeah so is spitting between same direction lanes.

    Al

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by LWB_guy View Post
    joejack951 said not to do lane-splitting, in order to ride VC. Somebody else said it's illegal in some states.
    Can you dig up the quote where I said that?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    Driving between two traffic lanes - with traffic on either side - most commonly done when traffic is slower, but can also be done when it is faster too.
    It is illegal in most US states, maybe all except CA? It is legal in several other countries.
    Al
    According to the wikipedia:

    Allowed in

    * Austria
    * Belgium
    * Brasil
    * Croatia
    * Estonia legal while keeping off medians and indicating before the maneuver
    * France
    * Greece
    * Italy
    * Japan
    * Netherlands
    * Norway
    * Portugal
    * Spain
    * South Africa
    * Sweden
    * United Kingdom[5]
    * United States only in California[6][7]
    I myself am in los angeles, california, and frequently lane-split in gridlock. I imagine people do this everywhere on bicycles and narrow scooters, regardless of legality. A bicycle lane-splitting through gridlock isn't very easy to stop and ticket.

  10. #10
    -=Barry=- The Human Car's Avatar
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    Lane splitting is legal in DC and I will assert that it is legal in any state that allows motorists and cyclists to share the same lane to accommodate faster moving traffic (cars are not always the faster vehicle) YMV in court with this little tidbit. (If cars can ride the line to pass a cyclist then why can't we do the same?)
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  11. #11
    JRA
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    Senior Member JRA's Avatar
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    Laws that apply specifically to motorcycles do not apply to bicycles. As far as I can tell, all the lane-splitting laws people have talked about in this thread are for motorcycles. I don't recall ever seeing a law applying to bicycles that makes lane-splitting illegal.

    The consensis of the motorcycle websites is that for motorcycles, lane-splitting is illegal in all states except, perhaps, California (California law is not entirely clear, despite claims by some that it is. What is clear is that the CHP has said that they will not ticket motorcyclists for lane-splitting as long as it is done in a safe and prudent manner).

    For bicycles, it's unclear whether lane-splitting is legal or illegal.

    It is clear that the laws for bicycles regarding lane-sharing are different from the laws for motorcycles. Some states have laws which specifically prohibit a motor vechicle that is not a motorcycle from sharing a lane with a motorcycle. In contrast, sharing a lane with a bicycle is not only not prohibited but, in some instances, bicyclists are legally required to share a lane (by the so-called "ride right" rules).

    Can someone cite a law applying to bicycles (as opposed to motorcycles) that specifically prohibits lane-splitting?
    Last edited by JRA; 08-09-08 at 04:13 PM.
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  12. #12
    Devilmaycare Cycling Fool Allister's Avatar
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    If cars can pass me in the same lane, I figure I can do the same.
    If we learn from our mistakes, I must be a goddamn genius.

  13. #13
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allister View Post
    If cars can pass me in the same lane, I figure I can do the same.
    Hey ... I was expecting to see that video of you splitting lanes. You can't miss an opportunity like this.

  14. #14
    Minneapolis, MN
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    Minnesota

    Here's our law prohibiting Lane Splitting:
    (e) No person shall operate a motorcycle between lanes of moving or stationary vehicles
    headed in the same direction, nor shall any person drive a motorcycle abreast of or overtake or
    pass another vehicle within the same traffic lane, except that motorcycles may, with the consent of
    both drivers, be operated not more than two abreast in a single traffic lane.

    It's only in our motorcycle section.

    Here's our law that allows vehicles to "share" a traffic lane:
    Subd. 4. Passing on the right. The driver of a vehicle may overtake and pass upon the right
    of another vehicle only upon the following conditions:
    (2) upon a street or highway with unobstructed pavement not occupied by parked vehicles of
    sufficient width for two or more lines of moving vehicles in each direction;


    Under the passing on the right section. Most every lane allows for "unobstructed pavement not occupied by parked vehicles of sufficient width for two or more lines of moving vehicles in each direction" when one of the vehicles is a bicycle.

    The important distinction is that Lane Splitting and Passing on the Right are two different things.

    Scot

  15. #15
    Devilmaycare Cycling Fool Allister's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by invisiblehand View Post
    Hey ... I was expecting to see that video of you splitting lanes. You can't miss an opportunity like this.
    I wouldn't want to be accused of shameless self-promotion.

    But, since you mentioned it, take your pick
    Last edited by Allister; 08-11-08 at 08:32 PM.
    If we learn from our mistakes, I must be a goddamn genius.

  16. #16
    20+mph Commuter JoeyBike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allister View Post
    I wouldn't want to be accused of shameless self-promotion.

    But, since you mentioned it, take your pick
    Just watched One Broken Down Truck - Part 1. Sweet.

    Do you think you passed 1000 cars? I love the cars that have green lights but can not proceed because of all the traffic stuck at the next light fill the whole road ahead of them.

    Great control of that recumbent too. Are those feet or knees that bob into the frame as you pedal?

    Ya know...you could be alienating all those motorists with your lane-splitting. Making it hard on all the rest of us!

    HAHA....just kidding! You know I'm lovin' the vid. Going back for more too.
    "For all we know his skills may be excellent, allowing him to ride like an idiot without actually being one." - FBinNY

  17. #17
    Devilmaycare Cycling Fool Allister's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
    Do you think you passed 1000 cars? I love the cars that have green lights but can not proceed because of all the traffic stuck at the next light fill the whole road ahead of them.
    At least 1000. Never counted them.

    That traffic density also means it makes not a jot of difference if I run any red lights too. The gaps in traffic you take advantage of simply don't exist.

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
    Great control of that recumbent too. Are those feet or knees that bob into the frame as you pedal?
    Feet.

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
    Ya know...you could be alienating all those motorists with your lane-splitting. Making it hard on all the rest of us!
    Probably
    If we learn from our mistakes, I must be a goddamn genius.

  18. #18
    20+mph Commuter JoeyBike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allister View Post
    That traffic density also means it makes not a jot of difference if I run any red lights too. The gaps in traffic you take advantage of simply don't exist.
    Of course. Every day, every hour - intersections are like living organisms that change characteristics. You have to take them as they come that moment. Believe me, there are red lights where I must stop too.
    "For all we know his skills may be excellent, allowing him to ride like an idiot without actually being one." - FBinNY

  19. #19
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    I bet allister didn't mean red lights you need to stop at because you can't run the red becasue of cross traffic, joey,

    but traffic dense enough there's no gap effect provided running a red by bicyclists afraid of traffic.

    Generally speaking, when dealing with congested urban traffic, lane splitting either between two lanes of traffic or on the double yellow approaching lights and moving in front of all stopped traffic gets a bicyclist most visible and in 'best' position while still adhering to most traffic laws.

    Cars 'share' lanes with me all the time, I 'share' -split- lanes with them all the time. quid pro quo in a way.
    Last edited by Bekologist; 08-12-08 at 09:45 AM.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  20. #20
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    While I'm certain that there are people who find lane-splitting such an outrageous proposition that they'd wish to ban it... but living in Cali I've never heard of a single incidence of a cyclist being ticketed simply for lane-splitting (and they give out BUIs around here). It's pretty well accepted and expected in this area, much as motorcyclists do it. Unfortunately, you run some risk of getting doored (better to run up the driver-side than the passenger-side door I think) and you also run risk of getting hooked or all variety of nasty end results. Summarily... I've never seen anybody doing this at higher speeds... and I know I wouldn't, though I will overtake cars that are going relatively fast. It's just a bad idea to lane-split with this little margin-of-error going at anything much faster than a walk.

  21. #21
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allister View Post
    Interesting... familiar comments all, but the language use is different... and a bit fun. IE "And don't forget the ******s and wankettes..." etc. etc.

    Oh and this is simply classic: "The difference between them and other road uses is; they don't pay to use the roads through registration." Again, the same old drivel.

    "You reckon there would be so many if they had to pay rego and CTP?" I wonder if he recons that "rego and CTP) for the weight and vehicle class of "bicycle" might be a mere pittance?

    Oh well, like I said, same old stuff, slightly different language... ah, it never ceases does it?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saving Hawaii View Post
    While I'm certain that there are people who find lane-splitting such an outrageous proposition that they'd wish to ban it... but living in Cali I've never heard of a single incidence of a cyclist being ticketed simply for lane-splitting (and they give out BUIs around here). It's pretty well accepted and expected in this area, much as motorcyclists do it. Unfortunately, you run some risk of getting doored (better to run up the driver-side than the passenger-side door I think) and you also run risk of getting hooked or all variety of nasty end results. Summarily... I've never seen anybody doing this at higher speeds... and I know I wouldn't, though I will overtake cars that are going relatively fast. It's just a bad idea to lane-split with this little margin-of-error going at anything much faster than a walk.
    I do it at full speed. Just have to watch out for opening taxi doors when traffic is completely stopped.

  23. #23
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    What is lane splitting?

    Anyone that drives like that shouldn't be surprised when someone opens a car door just before they hit that door. An American a**hole will do it just out of spite. As a biker and a cyclist I know for a fact that only a dope on dope idiot would drive between two lanes of cars. I have seen drivers close the gap between lanes to stop or slow a rider. But, hey, if ya wanna, it's YOUR Death wsh and not mine!

  24. #24
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    They don't pay?

    Yo maroon: Ever think that cars and trucks do more damage to a roadway which needs to be repaired at the cost of motorists? Wonder how much damage a 25 pound bike does to the roadway when comepared to a multi ton vehicle? Pull your finger out!

  25. #25
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    legal

    Legal in Tx and CA.
    I have split lanes on bicycles and motorcycles.
    Some lady in LA just about got me when she moved toward me for No Reason on the highway.
    In Tx I split lanes at stop lights.
    Just take out life insurance before you start.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
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