When a motorcycle driver weaves between lanes of traffic or passes another vehicle within a single lane, they are performing the act of lane splitting. This is possible due to the small size and relative mobility of a motorcycle compared to cars, but it is not legal in every state.
Oregon motorists should be aware of laws surrounding motorcycle lane splitting in their state. Because a motorcyclist might decide to split a lane at any time, it is also important to know how the act can affect everyone on the road.
Oregon laws around lane splitting
According to Oregon legal statutes, any act of passing that deprives a vehicle of a full lane is illegal. This also applies to larger cars depriving a motorcycle of a full lane in an attempt to pass. It is, however, legal for a motorcycle to split a lane with another motorcycle or similar vehicle.
How lane splitting impacts everyone
Lane splitting can be very dangerous to all parties on the road. A motorcyclist is likely to surprise other drivers while lane splitting, causing them to react or compensate in such a way that might lead to a motorcycle accident. Similarly, motorcyclists open themselves up to the possibility of colliding with mirrors or car doors when entering close proximity to other vehicles.
While lane splitting is perfectly legal in some states, it is an illegal act on Oregon roads. Furthermore, lane splitting can lead to harmful collisions that may necessitate filing a motor vehicle accident claim.