Home Blog Motorcycle Accident What if Lane-Splitting Contributed to a Motorcycle Accident?

What if Lane-Splitting Contributed to a Motorcycle Accident?

By Eugene Bruno on July 15, 2023

California is the only state in the country that allows lane-splitting. Motorcycles engage in this maneuver by passing between two vehicles, driving with the flow of traffic. Lane-splitting can be done when traffic is moving at a slow pace, at a complete standstill, or to allow a motorcycle to pass through. Although legal in California, it is still essential for motorcyclists to obey other traffic laws and ensure they are performing this maneuver safely. Other motorists on the road should also be aware of riders who are lane-splitting to help prevent collisions.

What Are Motorcyclists’ Rights on the Road?

In addition to lane-splitting, it is also legal for a motorcyclist to share a lane with another motorcyclist. Motorcyclists cannot use the shoulder of the road for lane-splitting. For other motorists on the road, it is the legality of these maneuvers must be respected. It is illegal to block a motorcyclist from safely lane-splitting while traffic is slowed. Therefore, if an accident occurs because you blocked a motorcyclist from lane-splitting, you could be held liable for it.

For motorcyclists who engage in lane-splitting, it is important to understand that, though it may be legal in California, it must be done safely. Generally, to perform this move safely, there are two rules of thumb motorcyclists need to follow:

  • Only lane-split if traffic is moving at a speed of 50 mph or less.
  • Do not drive lane split when driving at an excessive speed.

Who is Liable for a Lane-Splitting Accident?

If you were involved in a lane-splitting accident, it could impact your claim. Since California is a pure comparative negligence state, responsibility on either side may affect compensation. For example, if it’s determined that you were partially to blame for the accident, your recovery award would be reduced by the percentage for which you were at fault.

If you are a motorcyclist who safely engaged in lane-splitting, you may not bear any responsibility for the collision, and the other motorist would be held liable. If you were recklessly weaving in between cars and speeding, you could be totally or partially liable for the accident.

Obtaining Compensation for Your Claim

After being involved in a lane-splitting accident, it is crucial to seek immediate medical attention. Doing so could not only protect your health and well-being but also start a paper trail that would be beneficial for your claim. It is also essential to hire an experienced San Diego motorcycle accident lawyer to talk to the at-fault driver’s insurance company on your behalf so you don’t get thrown a lowball settlement offer.

Schedule a Consultation with an Experienced San Diego Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

Being injured in a motorcycle accident is an incredibly overwhelming experience, and recovering from your injuries could be a painfully long process. At Eugene Bruno & Associates in San Diego, our personal injury team is dedicated to helping accident victims pursue fair and just compensation for their injuries and other losses.

We understand the difficulty of your situation and are prepared to offer the compassionate legal support you need to navigate it as smoothly as possible. Call us at 1-888-278-6688 to schedule a free consultation and get started on your case.

Posted in: Motorcycle Accident