Lane splitting and filtering are topics of controversy across the country. Many people believe these practices can reduce the volume of motorcycle accidents, while others are not so easily convinced.
What is lane splitting?
Splitting lanes occurs when motorcyclists drive safely between other motor vehicles. This can happen during the flow of traffic or while motor vehicles are standing still.
What is lane filtering?
This is basically the same as lane splitting, but it only occurs while other vehicles are not moving. For example, when traffic is standing still at an intersection, the cyclist may travel between traffic to move safely up the lane.
California is currently the only state in which it is legal to engage in lane splitting. Here in the state of Connecticut, it remains illegal for cyclists to engage in either of these practices. However, the state’s lawmakers have introduced a bill to make splitting and filtering legal.
Do these practices really reduce motorcycle accidents?
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), research has shown that some form of lane splitting or filtering can slightly reduce motorcycle accident frequency. This is because it allows cyclists to reposition themselves within traffic, which can increase their visibility to other motorists. Splitting lanes can also help cyclists avoid an impending crash by providing them with an escape route.
While lane splitting in Connecticut could be a valuable safety measure if approved, it may not always prevent a crash caused by a negligent party. It is always wise to have your accident case reviewed by an experienced injury lawyer.