Jan 10, 2013

Another Lane Splitting Argument

Not gonna happen here, but it should:

While lane splitting is practical, necessary, economical, reasonable and safe, there aren't enough motorcycles on the road in the US (even CA or the rest of the west coast) to make legislation worthwhile. Like the foolish "Start Seeing Motorcycles" campaign, there needs to be a lot more motorcycles on the road before anyone will care about making motorcycle commuting more efficient. Who cares how easy and efficient it could be for people commuting on unicorns or Pegasus? There is no such thing, so passing laws to make life easier for imaginary transportation systems is silly. Likewise, with 0.001% of the traffic on the road being motorcycles, who cares if we get there faster?

I disagree with their position on riding with a finger or two on the front brake. Braking is the right response only occasionally and can be catastrophically the wrong move more often than not. Preparing yourself for the wrong move with poor technique is a dumb idea.


RichardM said...

When I was riding in CA last summer, I just couldn't get myself to do it. Even though I knew it was legal...

But I agree that this needs to be publicized a bit more as even long time residents of CA weren't aware that it was legal.

theUg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
theUg said...

As I wrote a college paper on filtering, some comments on the sources. Hurt report is outdated and inconclusive on this matter in the words of the author himself. However, there is European Motorcycle Accident In-Depth Study (MAIDS), that is recent (2009) and contains metrics specifically related to filtering.

Oregon TD white paper (Motorcycle Lane-sharing: Literature Review, PDF), quotes: “Out of the 921 crashes investigated, 4 (0.4%) were engaged in filtering as the pre-crash motion. Comparatively, 26 (2.8%) accidents occurred while the motorcycle (referred to as the powered two-wheeler (PTW)) was stopped in traffic with a speed of zero, and 452 (49.1%) occurred with the PTW moving in a straight line with constant speed.” That paper also mentioned some U.S. study commissioned by DOT with pilot to be published in 2010, but I have yet to find it.

Belgian study they mentioned in the video is described in The Telegraph article.

If anyone interested in checking my paper’s arguments, I could put it up on the web. Even though it is just a college project, I am thinking about some sort of advocacy here in Idaho.

T.W. Day said...

The Ride to Work folks are hard after getting filtering and splitting legalized. I wish them well, but suspect the US is too backwards, conservative, and timid to allow radical, practical ideas to spread. I split lanes every day for a decade in Orange County (between San Diego and LA). Without the ability to split lanes and filter, motorcycles don't do much for reducing congestion, pollution, or general traffic control. In fact, without the ability to split lanes, commuting on a motorcycle is probably silly.