Born to be Wild: Lane-Splitting Becomes Law in California

Q: Will lane-splitting result in more motorcycle accidents?

Lane splitting became legal in California on January 1, 2017. The practice is defined as allowing a two-wheeled motorcycle to be driven between rows of stopped or slowly moving vehicles.

As a practical reality, the new law legalizes the long-time practice of bikers zipping through a sea of bumper-to-bumper cars at rush hour. While the law is already in effect, the California Highway Patrol has been tasked with developing “educational guidelines” on lane splitting to ensure it is practiced safely for all motorists.

Before getting your motor running and heading out on the highway, bikers should take extra precautions and wear safety gear while awaiting those safety guidelines. It’s dangerous out there on the open road.

California highways are home to many motorcyclists as well as traditional drivers. When the two collide, the biker bears the brunt of the damage, often suffering devastating if not fatal injuries. While lane-splitting may be newly legal, it has been a practice for as long as bikes have been on the roadways and it’s been one of the leading reasons for motorcycle accidents, along with speeding, distracted driving, alcohol and drugs and  inexperienced riders.

The investigation after a motorcycle accident is critical in determining who is at fault or, if more than one party is at fault, the degree to which each party is responsible, because that determines who is financially responsible for the damages resulting from the accident. This is a complex process and requires an experienced motorcycle accident attorney to protect your rights and maximize your recovery.

Another problem on the highways of California is the number of hit and run accidents. As expected, it can be complicated to obtain compensation if the driver who hits you flees the scene. Experienced hit-and-run accident attorneys can advise you of options to claim compensation from your own insurance provider depending on your particular circumstances.

If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, or a hit-and-run accident, it’s important to contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. A knowledgeable attorney will safeguard evidence, get involved in the investigation, deal with the insurance companies on your behalf, negotiate over settlement offers or aggressively litigate the action, if need be.

Call the California personal injury law firm of J & Y at 888-806-6722 for a free consultation. We represent accident victims throughout the state of California and can help you.