Internet reacts to Lane Splitting episode

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Lane splitting is when a motorcycle travels in-between the lanes of moving or stationary vehicles. Through studies, it’s been proven that lane splitting increases safety for motorcyclists and reduces traffic congestion for cars. It’s also a great bunch of fun. Nevertheless, it’s always stirred a lot of controversy from all sides. Yesterday’s RideApart episode was no different, garnering over 55,000 views in the first 24 hours alone and creating a massive, Internet-wide debate. Here’s some highlights of that.

Our top 25 favorite comments:

1. “Try learning how to drive. That might help solve your problems.” – Marimivibe, Jalopnik

2. “As a motorcyclist and a londoner i’m amazed lanesplitting is so villified in the USA. I can personally think​of one incident where it’s saved my skin, when a transit van went into the back of a car at a red light literally just after I filtered past.” – Vracktal, YouTube

3. “RideApart is encouraging me every day to​get a motorcycle license.” – nukeman13, Youtube

4. If only.​If more people rode motorcycles it would be a much safer and happier world.” – Jeremy Blanchard, YouTube

5. “I try to hit you guys with my car door on the daily. Thanks for the laughs​.” – G-Man Yo, youtube

6. “I don’t support SHIT for motorcyclists. They think they are above the law and regularly get away with an absurd level of bullshit. At the very least you should realize that you weigh a few hundred lbs and I’m in a 1-to-4 ton vehicle … That means that you need to yield to me for your own safety. Same for bicyclists and runners/joggers/walkers. Don’t like it? Fine … Just don’t bitch when I’m popping out a dent while your family recovers your remains with a spatula. I hate to be so blunt about it but I’m sick of this argument.” – Gideon35t, Jalponik

7. “Say i’m sitting at a red light, my door is not closed all the way, so​i open it to shut it hard and motorcycle runs into my door, not my fault. And lane splitting is illegal anyways.” – PeytonRobinson, YouTube

8. “Anyone intentionally taking action to harm a motorcyclist while lane splitting is essentially committing attempted murder. Cars are considered deadly weapons if used to harm another person. As for doors opening on the freeway, that very rarely happens and only in completely stopped​traffic (who opens their door going 15 mph in traffic?). So the only people opening doors have a homicidal hatred for motorcyclist.” – legoflamb, YouTube

9. “Not just no, but FUCK NO! The only way I would agree is if the car drive is absolved from any responsibility from hitting the bike with the side of the car. Car drivers who ride in your blind spot are bad enough, but a bike that suddenly appears in it? I nearly took out a car today on my left. I was going to change lanes, had my signal on, but he ignored it, and tried to go around me just as I changed lanes. He went onto the shoulder, to bad he didn’t hit the wall!” – SidewaysByChoice, Jalopnik

10. “ok I want to preface this by i stopped the video at about 7-8 minutes and I’m not a motorcycle rider. As a Car driver please understand a few things:
1. Blind spots, you guys scare the hell out of me and I think I’m going to crush you every time I change lanes if you’re near me on the highway. So imagine how I feel when you zip by splitting the lane? Note this was worse when I drove an SUV.
2. It pisses me off when I’m in a hurry and someone gets to jump to the front of the line in traffic.
3. You’re on smaller, quicker, and more nimble vehicles and you appear/disappear without warning. Sure it’s controlled to you as you do it but it’s damn hard to keep track of you in 4 lanes of 70 MPH traffic (Michigan hwy speed limit is 70…which means everyone is doing near 80).
4. You don’t even have to wear helmets in Michigan anymore. (though for some idiotic reason I still have to wear a seat belt!)
My feeling comes back more to points 1 and 3, which are pretty close I guess. Is it really so bad that I don’t want to crush you? Sure he’s “taking his life into his own hands” but I would be the one who has to live with the fact that I CRUSHED a guy at 70-80 mph.”
MontegoMan562 – Jalopnik

11. “this comment is on page 5 your a troll gtfooh,they are self centered because they think their time is more important than everyone elses,i wont open doors but i will take​my side out of the middle to keep assholes like htis from breaking the law,its against the law where i live ,no way in hell id live in the toilet bowl of a city like L.A.or california” – 4godaddygo, YouTube

12. “You’ve obviously never driven in LA…. average drivers in LA are borderlined retarded. I can ride just fine, its other drivers who i don’t trust. i live in Portland OR, lane splitting is illegal here, however, i find myself wishing i could split lanes here. however, i felt the opposite while on a road trip through LA. riders there lanr split while going at least 35mph faster than flow of traffic… if you condone such actions, you sir are an idiot” – Nick Guarente, Facebook

13. “MOST MORONS THAT GIVE NEGATIVE COMMENTS HAVE NEVER RODE A BIKE. SOME OF THESE IDIOTS HAVE NEVER BEEN OUT OF THE US SO YOU GUYS TRYING TO EXPLAIN THE WAY OTHER PEOPLE IN OTHER COUNTRIES HOW THEY RIDE IS JUST POINTLESS. MOST PEOPLE ALL OVER THE WORLD PEOPLE RIDE SCOOTERS IN MASS NOT BECAUSE THEY PRACTICAL CHEAP TO RUN AN​ ECONOMICAL . THEY ARE FUN. IN THE US WELL YOU RIDE A SCOOTER YOU ARE FAG OR A SISSY.”’ – roncervezawhiskey, YouTube

14. “Hey pals, lets find a way to justify the idea that as motorcyclists, we ought to be able to do whatever we want on the road under the guise that we’re superior enough in comparison to car drivers that the only safe way for me to drive with some hot girl sexting is if I’m allowed to wiz by her in the same lane, coming closer than any car would ever normally get to her.” This is the dumbest logic I’ve heard of today.” – Kimithechamp, Jalopnik

15. “I’ve been riding since late 2004 here in California and have lane split since the start. At first it was intimidating, but just like anything else you begin to get better at it and gain confidence doing it. It takes time getting adjusted to the heightened alertness you must have while you do it but once you do you see everything. People brushing their teeth, shaving, applying makeup, reading books/magazines/newspapers, texting, making phone calls, looking for something in the console, and basically anything else you do while driving a car. You learn the characteristics of distracted driving and know when to change lanes/slow down/speed up and pass them to get away from them. I learned so much about defensive riding by doing it that when I once upon a time moved to Texas for a short time and couldn’t lane split I felt like a sitting duck with a huge target on my back. That feeling was spot on because no more than a few days of riding went by that I got rear ended in traffic by a girl in her late teens texting. That experience was a major factor when it came to my decision to move back to California. There is no debate in my eyes that would persuade me to think that lane splitting isn’t a safer alternative than riding/sitting in traffic.” – RT Moto, Hell For Leather

16. “Wes, your mullet has my approval. That is all.” – joshtheriddler, YouTube

17. “Not to mention, Lane splitting in my state “Texas’ is 100% Illegal, have I done it before? YES, did it save my life? YES–lady behind me was coming up WAY to fast​and didn’t see me.” – Reduxalicious, YouTube

18. “It pisses me off when I’m in a hurry and someone gets to jump to the front of the line in traffic.” That is rich. I consider myself a safe & sensible lane splitter (only when traffic is congested or cars are stopped at a red light) but I regularly have drivers who obviously see/hear me coming and then tighten up the gap, making it difficult/impossible to get through. The same f*cked up sensibility appears to be at work: IF I CAN’T GO THEN WHY SHOULD YOU BE ABLE TO? Here’s an idea, MontegoMan562: Instead of blithely driving along & zoning out, take a little responsibility behind the wheel. Pay attention (i.e., head check before switching lanes), communicate your intentions (i.e., use your turn signals), and in general drive defensively. You’ll find driving more stimulating & engaging and the rest of the driving/riding public can worry about one less anonymous driver- one who is so wrapped up in himself/herself that it causes them distress to see someone actually making progress through traffic and having a good time doing it.” – pushover69, Jalopnik

19. “AWWW why! Because you`re stuck in traffic crying like a little baby​.” LUDE4LIFE1, YouTube

20. “I lanesplit/filter every day, and, seeing this video, i couldn’t agree more. We do drive a dangerous vehicle and need every chance possible to make it safer. Lanespliting/filtering not only is more economical, it also gives you some extra space/field of view if u ever need to react to something.” – mbit1997, Reddit

21. “At 5:00 they discuss how it is their fault if someone is not paying attention and swerves into them while they are splitting. It is on them…. except for the mental trauma experienced of KILLING SOMEONE because they were driving 3 inches between two cars. In some cases it might be safe, in many it is not. Put it this way. In upstate maine where I travel quite frequently, one could drive 120 mph and not see any cars for 30 minutes. then why would there be speed limits on any road. I can drive safely at fast speeds in the right conditions…. it sounds idiotic when you put it that way. Just because it is occasionally safe doesnt mean it should be legal.” – UnalteredTruth, Jalopnik

22. “wes ​is so handsome :)” – MrSaiwen, YouTube

23. “Um, it is safe. Dude, death threats​over the internet? Really, you’re that pathetic?” – setra23, YouTube

24. “Riding a motorcycle, there is only one rule in​my book. Being proactive than reactive, always. Anticipate than react. 110% concentration. That’s it. And God help us all.” – Balafoutre, YouTube

25. “I can’t believe the safety Nazis have not posted about how INSANELY DANGEROUS lane splitting is and pointing out that they are not ATGATT. The thread is more than a minute old. Weird.” – inthemachine, Reddit

  • Gregory Eaves

    Are most of the anti-motorcycle posts from the Jalopnik car-site?

    • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.joshua.silverman Daniel Silverman

      Jalopnik was 50/50, youtube was overwhelming for lanesplitting with some funny “I can’t wait to open my door in your face” remarks, HFL andreddit was all for lanesplitting, facebook was also 50/50.

    • Porter

      If you’ve ever read one of Jalopnik’s Four Wheels Good, Two Wheels Bad screeds you might not be surprised. I think Wert had a pathological fear of bikes or something.

    • http://www.facebook.com/OMG.Awesome Clint Keener

      I love jalopnik, but it seems like there are a ton of anti social miata nerds posting hate towards motorcycles.

    • http://twitter.com/KeyserBroze JB

      Jalopnik is gawker for cars. This should tell you what to expect.

    • jp182

      no youtube

  • Porter

    On an unrelated note, I have to wonder whether a guy who calls himself John Galt and pisses and moans about the big bad government tyrannizing the public by requiring helmets has ever actually read and comprehended Atlas Shrugged. The guy was a quitter. An unintentional symbol of the failure of that whole ideal.

    • Dustin Edwards

      It’s a very simplistic novel, and life just isn’t.

    • http://twitter.com/MRSallee Mark Ryan Sallee

      I agree with John Galt/Big Boss. (The commenter, not the character — never read Atlas Shrugged.)

      It’s pretty silly to not wear a helmet. I’m an ATGATT guy. But my view of government’s role in life doesn’t include protecting me from my own bad choices.

  • Strafer

    one of the anti lane-spitting comments i saw a few times was something like:
    “it pisses me off when someone passes me, rawr i’m mad about it”
    However as noted in the video motorcyclists are actually saving these same people time! If the motorcyclists did not lane split they would take up another space in the line of cars and the line of cars would be longer and everyone would get where they are going slower!

    • jp182

      you are expecting illogical people to be logical when it is in their best interest :-

  • nightscout13

    I would like to point out, that I have been involved in a collision, directly caused by my choice to lane split. I was lane splitting, and a car decided to cut me off, and I ended up veering to the left, and slamming into another car. Be that as it may, I still lane split, because I would not want to be a hood ornament. But to say that lane splitting is 100% safe, is asinine!

    • Chris Davis

      My only spill on the road has come when I didn’t lane split and got rear-ended at a light. Wasn’t injured but it didn’t do my bike or helmet any favors. Wouldn’t have happened had I split.

  • Filly-fuzz

    People are idiots

  • sixgunsteve

    I lane-split(ed?) today. I ride in VA, year ’round, lane-splitting is highly frowned upon (oh, and illegal). On the ride home today in a slight drizzle, 60 Degrees F, on a limited access 4-lane road with a wide grass median and a 55mph speed limit the two cars in front of me (one in each lane) were traveling at 40mph; neither one would fully pass the other. Each were driving at the outside edges of their respective lanes leaving a huge gap between them. I accelerated and passed between them giving them a quick flash of my four-ways and a friendly wave. Surprisingly, I could see in my mirrors that they each gave me a friendly return wave. At a red light a couple miles down the road one of those I passed pulled up beside me, rolled down his window and said, “hey, nice bike.” Point is I didn’t go flying between them and then act all bent out of shape that they wouldn’t drive the posted limit. I think most folks understand that letting bikes continue on, safely, frees up lane space for others.

    • roma258

      I lane split today and it was awesome. I live in PA and today was semi-warm so I went out for a ride. On the way home hit a massive traffic jam, seeing how I was cold and tired, I said fuck it and proceeded to lane-split for the next 20 miles solid. Saved at least 30-40 minutes of mind numbing traffic and surprisingly nobody tried to kill me (got a few honks). Today was a good day.

  • http://www.joelpm.com/ JoelPM

    A pointless comment, since it will never happen, but I wish the US had a gradated license program that required drivers to start on a scooter or sub-300cc motorcycle, then graduate to a bigger motorcycle, then graduate to a small car, then a big car, and etc. We recognize that driving large commercial vehicles is a challenge, but anybody who can drive a Honda Civic can also drive a Ford Expletive, er, Excursion….

    • kentaro

      You’re right, that was pointless. This post is about lane splitting.

  • Nathan Wiley

    I hate my species.

  • Łukasz Halman

    Geez. Some people have issues. Lane splitting is simply how you drive motorcycle in the traffic, except for the US :P Nobody argues about it. Car drivers let us through cause they understand it will get both us and them faster home/work. And this bullshit about extremely dangerous… if I’m lane splitting and somebody hits me… well, my fault.

    • TestSalad

      Is that the legally how it works?

  • http://twitter.com/MRSallee Mark Ryan Sallee

    Ugh, the mindset of some of these geniuses… Depressing display of humanity. Childish tantrums, gross threats.

  • Dustin Edwards

    “22. “wes ​is so handsome :)” – MrSaiwen, YouTube”

    Ok who picked this one? Come on with it Wes we know it’s you.

  • Matthew Mason

    ugh I knew reading this would just anger me

    I was filling up my bike at a gas station last summer and this guy in a huge Cadillac Escalade reverses all of a sudden and almost hits me. I promptly beep so I don’t die a 21 year old kid under some jerks caddy that doesn’t see me. I’ll spare you the altercation and say only that this had an end result of death threats from him and comments like, “my son has a better bike than your P@ssy bike. He could ride here and beat you up!!!” I don’t understand how someone with a loved one that rides would hate a biker for no reason. But alas I also don’t understand my little honk caused death threats either.

    If I walked up to a random stranger on the street and broke their arm with a baseball bat, I couldn’t simply tell the cops “I didn’t like him, he walked faster than me”. I don’t understand how people can get so angry at complete strangers that are simply commuting especially when motorcycles pose no real threat to them. I have no idea how they then rationalize trying to maim, debilitate, or kill someone going 10 mph faster than them. It’s common sense: Causing harm to another human for your own pet peeves is APPALLING!!!

    Motorcyclists are people just like you getting from A to B. I am a pre-med college student that acts responsibly and obeys the law. I want to dedicate my life to helping others. Riding is cost effective, green, and enjoyable. When I take off my jacket and helmet no one would know I am a biker! We’re people too!

    Trying to stop lane splitting by opening car doors or narrowing gaps is wrong!
    Please stop with the madness! Please don’t murder us!

    Sincerely,
    a 21 year old kid just getting from a to b

    fyi I live in NY and do NOT lane split as it is illegal here. However
    people seem to deliberately try and make my life more difficult on a
    bike (ex not let me merge, cutting me off, excessive tailgating…etc). We need to seriously educate the public about motorcycles and simple etiquette in drivers ed.

    • Filly-fuzz

      just filter as you see fit.

      We can’t spend our life pandering to the ignorance of others.

    • Robotribe

      Riding any bike (motorcycle, scooter or pedal bike) responsibly is an exercise in patience and resilience towards your fellow human and a daily reminder that everyone has the potential to be a f*ckt@rd when they’re behind the wheel.

      Rather than wasting our energy and time being pissed about it, or worse, risking physical altercations or death, it’s likely better for all riders to just keep our wits about us out there, use common sense as we navigate around folks who we should all assume are out to kill us, and grow a thicker skin when provoked by ignorant drivers.

      There’s an @$$hole around every corner; be it on the road, bicycle path, sidewalk, or even the line at the Starbucks. That will never change.

      Be cautious. Be patient. Don’t invite danger. Live to ride another day.

      • Hooligan

        “Rather than wasting our energy and time being pissed about it, or worse, risking physical altercations or death, it’s likely better for all riders to just keep our wits about us out there, use common sense as we navigate around folks who we should all assume are out to kill us, and grow a thicker skin when provoked”

        I agree 100%. Ice water in the veins is a necessary tool in your survival skills. Also, never trust anyone and what you think they might do. Because often they don’t – so you need some wriggle room.
        But observation is the key. If you don’t see the problem then you cannot deal with it.

  • http://twitter.com/shieldsy67 Shieldsy

    Lane splitting and lane filtering are 2 different animals. Splitting when traffic is moving – filtering when traffic is stopped (great to stop you getting rear ended at the lights) Down here in Australia both of these practices are illegal – however the Police will ‘normally’ turn a blind eye to filtering. No one, Police or public tolerate splitting too well – the motorists get wild and aggressive – filtering not too bad. I have to say from experience it also seems to depend on what your riding – if you look like a Hells Angel riding a Harley none will bother you – if your on a flash Japanese sports bike they tend to take more offence. If your riding a classic looking bike or new vintage they tend to leave you alone – go figure ……

  • http://www.facebook.com/paul.redican.7 Paul Redican

    Perhaps an article on the reaction to the reaction is in order
    ‘Mise en abyme’ much?

  • Hooligan

    I am truely shocked by some of the car drivers comments. To my eye it seems like a lot of them are a aggressive sparking bundle of snarling pyschosis and paranoia that seems to hate the world. Whatever happened to the nation that seemed confident and relaxed with who they were? Or is it all like those daytime TV shows where all that happens is that people scream at each other?. Not been to the US for well over 25 years so things must have changed.

    • Khali

      Driving a car lets out your worse “you”.

      Riding a bike lets out your best “you”.

      ;)

    • Nathan Wiley

      We have never been a nation of people who are confident and relaxed. We are the epitome of the little man. Afraid of everything and everyone, we are the bully on this rock.

    • Campisi

      More and more Americans are suffering from the ill-effects of cognitive dissonance as what they see harshly clashes with what they’re told.

    • Alex

      You have to know as well the demographics of the video and the Jalopnik post to really understand the negative responses and the backlash from bikers and bike lovers…

      The video is gonna be searched by both motorcyclists or aspiring motorcyclists and by crazy drivers who think it should be penalized (literally) by death for a bike to filter in stopped traffic, so that’s how you get such crazies to comment such idiotic, criminally-inclined nonsense.

      On the other hand Jalopnik attracts some of the most brain-dead car entusiasts ever, they worship a small, underpowered, Japanese car as if it were a God and also think of Clarkson as their Jesuschrist, and he hates bikes, arguably not everyone is like that, not even most of them, but they are a very vocal minority of the Jalopnik comentariat…

  • http://twitter.com/paulofoliveira Paulo Oliveira

    Lovely! USA people should travel more and see the world.
    There are others with different points of view and you could learn from them ;)

    Lane splitting rulez and we do-it everyday!
    We also ride on bus lanes but that will start a brand new discussion… :P

    Regards!

    • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.joshua.silverman Daniel Silverman

      I learned much my travels outside the US. Good times.

    • http://www.facebook.com/robert.paul.754703 Robert Paul

      Except travel is expensive… And most other countries hate Americans… I guess I can pretend I’m Canadian, I suppose.

  • Chester

    I think everyone in a vehicle should understand how dangerous they are, to themselves and everyone around them, and take responsibility while driving by paying attention to blind spots…the road in front of them as well perhaps…not using their vehicle as an extension of their living room during a commute.

    I think most motorcyclists understand this very well, those who don’t I think would be in the minority.

    Maybe they should just make a combined Car/Motorcycle test mandatory in the States so they don’t have to rely on ineffective words of explanation.

    • Hooligan

      I would love to see such a test in place for England as well. You have to ride a 125 or scooter for a bit then you can progress to a car. In my mind it woukld make a big difference.
      Extension of a living room is good way of putting it. Impinge on their individual fiefdom at your peril. Ha ha, I’m not even anti car – I have a Toyota Yaris.

      • Chester

        Here in Japan you can get your 50cc/125cc/400cc license from 16 years old and cars/big bikes from 18 years old. It’s not a mandatory test but budding petrol heads will go for the bike first usually.

        I think having to get both license would bring about an appreciation for what motorcyclists go through, and maybe they might just comprehend why we do it. We need more bikes on the road!

  • Khali

    Im glad I dont live in the USA…here (Madrid, Spain), lane-splitting is tolerated and many people moves their car away a bit to let you pass. Having a loud exhaust helps too, even on their blind spot they know there is a bike around. Oh, and not being able to do other things while driving…texting while driving? WTF? I cant even imagine that kind of thing being legal here….you guys need to change traffic laws A LOT.

    The government here is planning on a new traffic law that will make lane-splitting legal, and also riding on the road side (shoulder?) at a reduced speed when there is a traffic jam. We can also use bus lanes in the city. And they are testing double detention line for bikes at traffic lights (there is a first line for cars, then 2 meter ahead another one for bikes, so bikes can filter between cars and stop between the 2 lines ahead of the cars). I have used them and love it, and the tests are revealing that double line is much safer both for bikes and cars.

    I hope you guys can change your traffic laws to be more motorcycle-friendly. Keep fighting!

    • Hooligan

      Double detention lines. Yup we got those at traffic lights but only for cyclists. The cyclists ignore them as they do not believe traffic lights have any meaning to them. So everybody else uses them.

    • http://www.facebook.com/OMG.Awesome Clint Keener

      Texting while driving is illegal in most places, but everyone still does it.

  • http://twitter.com/Boredinmin Boredinmin

    I’m a Minnesota rider and seeing lane splitting scares the bejesus out of me. Drivers aren’t looking for bikers in between lanes. And, riding between lanes reduces the margin of safety to zero. One car quickly changing lanes, one door opening at the worst time, one wrong move and a rider is on the ground instantly. Dumb, dumb, dumb. Not worth saving a few minutes getting to work.

    • socalutilityrider

      Drivers here in CA are aware of splitting and tend to have a consciousness of it-but ultimately its up to you as the rider to spot threats posed by drivers and deal with them.

      I imagine in a state like yours where there is no “culture” of lane splitting, yes, drivers would not be looking for motorcyclists between lanes.

      Which is probably why Andy Goldfine, owner of Minnesota company Aerostich, sells and rides around with a LED sign on the back of his bike specifically promoting lane sharing to make drivers aware of it in states other than CA. Anyhow, I and pretty much all of europe can say from daily experience the safety margin is not zero while lane splitting.

      You know what is a safety margin of near zero? Minnesota deer waiting until the last second and jumping in front of you. Source: I grew up there & 100% of my family (including me) and most people I know have hit them and nothing would have stopped it due to the deer’s impeccable timing. Just sayin.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jskarimbas Jon Skarimbas

    I live in NY/NJ and I always lane split. It just feels totally natural and safe to do it and I feel totally ridiculous when I sit in traffic. I am careful not to get caught, but that stops me probably .05% of the time.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mitchel.durnell Mitchel Durnell

    “It’s hard for me to keep track of you!”

    Don’t worry, SUV driver. You don’t need to – I’m keeping track of you. Just signal before changing lanes and drive mellow, and all will be well.

    • TestSalad

      That’s a lot to ask of drivers.

      • Ben Wipperman

        Sad but true. Signal use is a utopian dream. Attitude control? That’s miracle land.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jonathan.berndt.73 Jonathan Berndt

      and when he signals when are are right alongside him???

  • TestSalad

    I’m surprised that no one brought up the issue of road width variance. In the east, there are much older roads than out west and they are not wide enough to reasonably allow for lane filtering.

    • Ben Wipperman

      One would hope that a reasonable motorcyclist wouldn’t attempt a split where there’s inadequate room. Assumptions are bad, but I’m sure that would legally fall under unsafe vehicle operation.

      • TestSalad

        But a state saying its legal anywhere sends the wrong message that its a safe thing to do anywhere.

    • Kr Tong

      I haven’t been to the east coast, but my first question would be, how old and narrow are we talking about, considering lane splitting in Europe is legal?

      • TestSalad

        London isn’t cobblestone roads. It’s one of the most modern road designs in the world.

        • Hooligan

          They were modern when the Romans were here. Now they are a disgrace. Badly maintained – huge potholes everywhere. Mixed surfaces. Nasty cheap paint overbanding which is slippy even in the dry. Manhole covers in the middle of corners. The days when a local council had it’s own dedicated road repair team working are long gone, all down to cheap contractors now. If you want to see nice modern well surfaced and designed roads go to Spain or Germany. The backlog for fixing roads here is something like 16 years in some places.

        • Kr Tong

          When i was in london there were cobblestone roads, but London isn’t Europe. This was my point: California has wide roads because we built cities around the car. Everywhere else did their city planning pre industrial revolution. If the east coast has narrow roads its because of this fact, meaning Europe would have the same problem, yet they allow lane splitting.

  • Ben Wipperman

    The scary part of imagining the same scenario in Texas: a whole lot of folks are armed. That said, while not everyone can be reasoned with, there’s a big gray area between that and your examples.

  • KeithB

    ” the role of government is not to save people from themselves”
    Yes, but it’s your tax dollars going to healthcare that pays for the drooling vegetable that has head trauma from an accident because “wearing a helmet (or seatbelt) is my decision”
    Figure it out folks! Your actions have an impact on others!

    • Ben Wipperman

      Keith, this line of reasoning comes up often, but always without any kind of clear numbers to back it up. What, precisely, is the impact to the taxpayer? How much are we looking at annually? How do the costs of care to helmeted versus non-helmeted riders compare? All-in, how does it compare to the annual medical costs of uninsured car drivers in the US? I’m just curious what the actual impact is.

      I always ride with a helmet. I think it’s a terrible decision not to. But I prefer people to have that choice. After all, a lot of people think riding at all is a terrible decision.

      The banking example isn’t a parallel to this discussion, though. There’s a significant difference between protecting you from yourself and protecting you from others.

      • KeithB

        I will agree that the banking comment is not directly connected to the helmet topic. However, a lot of the people (not all) who are pro personal safety choice, usually comment that government should be less involved. Those traders that screwed us all would argue that they should not have the government making decisions for them as well.
        As for the helmet choice and insurance/heathcare connection, I’m sure data is available somewhere but the magnitude isn’t the point.
        My point is the people who think that personal safety decisions don’t affect others, in one way or another, are not seeing the bigger picture.

      • http://twitter.com/vic06 vic06

        Private insurance doesn’t cover the full price of hospitalization. Insurance doesn’t cover the price of sending in police, EMTs to respond to a head trauma that could’ve been avoided with a helmet.

        There are quite a few studies out there that confirm that those who don’t wear a helmet use more tax dollars than those who do. You can start here:
        http://www.nhtsa.gov/people/injury/pedbimot/motorcycle/safebike/costs.html
        http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6123a1.htm
        http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2012/p0614_motorcycle_laws.html

        It also surprises me why these so-called freedom fighters don’t have a problem with riding DOT-approved vehicles, having a state-issued license, license plate and title of ownership, carrying mandatory insurance or riding on roads that needed way more than the fuel and wheel taxes to be built.

  • w0lfatncsu

    Jalopnik was a clusterfuck of homicidal idiots that seem to love the idea of killing of their fellow man.

  • Kr Tong

    Never heard of the term “filtering” before today. That’s a good one.

    I still remember this one time riding on the freeway about a week into buying my first bike. This ford explorer deliberately blocked me from lane splitting. I went around him into the center shoulder and he thought it was a good idea to drive into the shoulder in an attempt to block me again from going around. I hope that idiot realized he was throwing his fucking SUV at a teenager on a bike and killed himself.

  • http://twitter.com/Mr_Paynter Bryan Paynter

    Lane splitting in South Africa is Legal, i personally don’t often split in moving traffic or on the highways, but if things are stopped dead or close I will filter no doubt.

    We face the same, guys trying to block you, hooting and getting hot under the collar. So unneccessary.

  • Speedo007

    If lane splitting was made legal here in Montreal, you’d get many injured or killed by car drivers opening there doors on them. Even when stuck in the summer heat, drivers dont want to see you go by them. If I lived in a place where this was legal and accepted by car drivers, I would do it, but at a reasonable/safe speed.

  • HoldenL

    Comment No. 7 (“Say i’m sitting at a red light, my door is not closed all the way,
    so​i open it to shut it hard and motorcycle runs into my door, not my
    fault.”) is factually wrong, and drivers should be informed of this.

    I know this because a few years ago I had just parked, and I was opening my car door when a car zoomed into the parking space next to mine. The Caddy’s front bumper crunched the door that I was opening. The accident was deemed my fault. If you are opening a car door and a vehicle hits it, the law assumes that you weren’t watching for traffic behind you. It’s your fault, your financial responsibility (including hospital bills) and possibly even your criminal responsibility.

  • Andreas G.
  • Mark Desrosiers

    Ahh, for the halcyon days of the pay wall…

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Martin-Cron/588877784 Martin Cron

    Don’t read comments. Not even this one.

  • Lawrences

    4 wheeler drivers with a “bikes need to wait their turn” attitude need to stop passing heavy trucks on grades. The truck was there first. Wait your turn.

  • Jim

    Having been riding for the past 18 years in a country where it’s legal to lane-split, I’m amazed at the spite and vitriol shown by so many US drivers, who don’t seem to realize that their (lack of) progress in a car isn’t affected at all by lane-splitting bikes.

  • MG

    is it possible that HFL can lead the charge in helping make lane-splitting legal, state-by-state? I realize the magnitude of the request and the recognize the temporary (political) shift for HFL. However, one RideApart video has garnered so much attention and debate – wouldn’t it be incredible if it could be actuated to bring about change rather than passively exist as bits and bytes for the rest of eternity? Sorry, being dramatic.

    I am in GA and have signed fledgling petitions with no reach or results. It would be fantastic if we can mobilize an effort in every state and get the necessary signatures and facts to petition change. I volunteer to help in any way for GA.

  • http://www.facebook.com/george.h.hill George H Hill

    This debate would be a Non-Issue if Cagers were not assholes.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ben.steen Benjamin Steen

    These are great! Keep up the good work guys.