Lane-Splitting: Legal or Illegal?

We want to talk about Lane-splitting.

During the summer months, Washington sees a dramatic uptick in the number of motorcycle riders on the road. With an increased number of motorists, comes the question of lane-splitting/sharing. Whatever your stance on the subject, it is NOT legal in Washington State.

The 2017 Legislative Session

No new laws passed during the 2017 legislative session that have altered the current RCW barring lane splitting.

This law specifically states that no person shall operate a motorcycle between lanes of traffic or between adjacent lines or rows of vehicles; nor can a motorcycle overtake and pass in the same lane occupied by the vehicle being overtaken.

Washington State Patrol’s Role

The Washington State Patrol will continue to enforce RCW 46.61.608 which pertains to motorcycle operations and driving with wheels off the roadway.

Share the Road

Like we said earlier, the sun brings out a lot of motorists. We can’t stress enough how important it is for drivers to be aware of their surroundings.

According to the Washington State Traffic Safety Commission, an average of 74 motorcyclists died every year between 2011 and 2015.

Motorcyclists are physically smaller than cars; they can be harder to see. Drivers need to check mirrors before changing lanes, use turn signals, and increase following distances around motorcyclists.

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