Lane-splitting guidelines removed from DMV, CHP materials

State agencies are removing information about lane-splitting, potentially resulting in more motorcycle accidents for riders.

California motorcyclists are very familiar with the concept of lane-splitting. The practice, which is completely legal in the state, allows motorcycle riders to drive through cars that have slowed or stopped due to traffic congestion.

For many years, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) offered riders instructions on how they could perform this task safely to avoid being involved in a motorcycle accident. The DMV included these tips in materials provided to motorists, but has recently decided to remove information about lane-splitting in its future publications.

The DMV's removal of this material is in response to a complaint that was filed against the California Highway Patrol (CHP). The CHP has recommended lane-splitting in the past, and an individual challenged the agency's authority by making these recommendations. The state Office of Administrative Law agreed with this assertion and required the CHP to remove these materials, and the DMV has subsequently followed suit.

Many California motorists are actually unaware that lane-splitting is legal within the state. In a survey by the California Office of Traffic Safety, nearly 50 percent stated that they did not know the practice was permitted. Additionally, another 66 percent stated that they felt lane-splitting was unsafe, and increased the risk of a motorcycle accident.

Officials believe that removing this language from the safety materials could result in more dangers for motorcyclists. Lane-splitting is still legal, but there is no information on how to perform the action correctly. This could cause both motorcyclists and other motorists to make mistakes when riders are attempting to navigate through slowed or stopped traffic.

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, you may have several questions about what you will need to do in order to recover compensation. You should speak to an experienced personal injury attorney to receive advice regarding your claims.

Your attorney will be able to examine your case, and present you with a clear picture of all of the options available. This will allow you to understand your claim's potential worth, and decide how you want to proceed.

Many individuals make the mistake of accepting a settlement offer immediately after the crash. They fail to realize that the insurance companies are not acting in their best interests. Once the medical bills start to exceed the amount they received, they discover that they are unable to recover additional funds.

Do not let yourself get stuck in a similar situation. You should never accept one of these offers before speaking with your attorney. You need to be sure that you are taking all the steps necessary to protect your claims.

Our founding attorney, Scott J. Corwin, has more than 25 years of experience in representing accident victims injured in all forms of motor vehicle accidents, including motorcycle and bicycle accidents, in the Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange, San Diego, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties and throughout the state of California.