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I've only lived here a few weeks now so I don't know the laws that great. When entering the freeway do bikes have to stop at those traffic meter lights? Do you have to stop even if you just split to the front of the line? Also, I'm pretty sure it's allowed because I passed the highway patrol doing it but just wanted to double check, we're allowed to ride in the carpool/hov lane right? Even if riding solo?
 

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I'm assuming the light your referring to is during carpool. We don't have to wait if there's an hov lane available by taking the hov lain. If not .. we have to go by lights. Motorcycle can ride in hov lane for the most part.

Correct me if I am wrong.

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This hasn't changed since the last time I was in L.A. I was there in May visiting my mother and before that from 1972-1986.

California is a unique state but ONE has to grow up somewhere.



Ed
 

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I think the typical wording on the HOV lane is that a vehicle must have at least two occupants or be occupied to 1/2 capacity (that's the case for allowing bikes to use the HOV in Hawaii).

My CRX may have been technically eligible, but I'm not sure- reading laws is a pain in my ass, and wouldn't benefit me right now. <lazy>
 

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I think the typical wording on the HOV lane is that a vehicle must have at least two occupants or be occupied to 1/2 capacity (that's the case for allowing bikes to use the HOV in Hawaii).
In Ontario you can drive the HOV lane if you are driving an electric car as well.
 

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bikes are legal in the hov with just a single rider. i am not certain about the traffic meter lights though... its a traffic signal though so i imagine standard laws apply and we have to obey them
 

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and just a quick FYI - lane splitting is also legal. just dont ride like an idiot when you do it and you will have 0 problems
 

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all legal. regarding lane splitting, it's only legal if you're no more than 10mph above the speed of traffic (assuming traffic's going @ speed limit)
 

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While entering the freeway you can go on the HOV lane (diamond, carpool) , you must stop if there is only lanes controlled by a light. You can also ride on the HOV lane. I usually split lanes on slow moving traffic on the yellow lines or between the last two lanes. Lane splitting is definitely legal, just don't go 90 through stand still traffic. Play it safe.

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Just watch out for the new HOV/Toll lanes they have. I believe there's some on the 405, and 105... They have camera's on there that will send you a ticket in the mail.
Otherwise any Carpool/HOV lane is fine.
Splitting lanes on the fwy/hwy is fine as long as it is done under the speed limit and done 'safely'. Now that's where it will get tricky for you if you get pulled over for that exact reason. Each cop will interpret 'safely' in a different manner, so use your best judgement. But if it's pretty bad traffic, just keep at it! They wont come after you.
As of this year the cops will be cracking down on the sport bikes more, especially on the exhaust... so just beware.

And WELCOME to California :)
 

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^^^ not the 105 its the 110. I received one of those in the mail a few weeks back. I completely forgot that they had changed it from carpool to fastrak.
Yup . that's the only lane we can't ride in BC they're fast rack and not hov lane .. Unless you have a fastrak pass.

What about toll bridges? I hate paying twice for two bike going throw bay bridge ... Techinally its 4 axle with 2 bike but its 4 wheel just like a reg car .. Haha

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all legal. regarding lane splitting, it's only legal if you're no more than 10mph above the speed of traffic (assuming traffic's going @ speed limit)

It's legal to split lanes??? :shifty

So, for example coming up to a red light, I can go between traffic to get to the front? Nobody has said anything about this in FL... :scratch
 

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Not in FL, in CA.

Basically, if there is a dashed white line, you can lane split. On a solid line, such as appears between the lanes of a metered ramp, you can't. You can't split on the shoulder, again, that is a solid line. It has to be between two lanes going the same direction, with a dashed white line in between. You can't split on the line between the car pool lane and the regular lane either. That is a solid painted line.

You can ride where ever you can fit the bike, but you risk a reckless driving ticket if you ride on any solid line while lane splitting.
 

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Not in FL, in CA.

Basically, if there is a dashed white line, you can lane split. On a solid line, such as appears between the lanes of a metered ramp, you can't. You can't split on the shoulder, again, that is a solid line. It has to be between two lanes going the same direction, with a dashed white line in between. You can't split on the line between the car pool lane and the regular lane either. That is a solid painted line.

You can ride where ever you can fit the bike, but you risk a reckless driving ticket if you ride on any solid line while lane splitting.
Ah, that makes sense.
 

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Technically speaking its illegal to split, legal to lane share.. Meaning even in a single lane you can still go to the front. If you ride the white line even if its dotted you can be pulled over. Ask me how I know lol you have to be in one lane or another. Can't ride the line


Also if you look this up in the vehicle code book all the book says is its legal to lane share. That is it. So there is no law saying you must do at a certain speed or if traffic is moving a certain speed it just says you can. Thus it is up to the officer if you are a danger to yourself or others. In the Bay Area or larger city's you can get away splitting up to the speed limit. I have split up to 70mph right infront, behind, and a lane over from countless chp's however in smaller communities with local LEOs I will only do so if traffic is moving slowly or coming up on a red light

Bikes are allowed in every car pool lane in the state.

Also something I have found from time to time if you cut to the front in a construction zone where there is a pilot car. Most times they will let you go through without following the pilot I have had this happen several times
 

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Interesting. You may be right about the wording, though you could very rarely actually share a lane with a car, since they are not wide enough. You have to use the extra space of two lanes, i.e., riding right between them to have the space you need.

If you actually share a lane with a car, they'd wonder what the heck you were doing. They are used to just getting passed by people riding the line next to them.

You take a foot and a half from one lane, and a foot and a half from the other to get the space you need to get through. I think that enforcement is largely arbitrary in terms of what police are looking for to pull you over. I think the motorcycle cops, who are largely the only ones who can effectively pull over a lane splitter, are pretty generous with their enforcement. They ride all day long doing the same thing, and have a good feel for what is relatively safe.

When you are lane splitting you are sort of coloring outside the lines. It is hard to find a clear way to enforce a specific behavior, so I think they intentionally leave the laws and enforcement vague. They just look for you being a danger. They have some concrete things they can enforce, such as speed relative to traffic, but they seem to use judgement even on that. If you look like you riding safely, they will usually overlook a bit of extra speed.

If any accident happens while you are lane splitting, they will assume you are at fault as a starting point. Then you would have the uphill battle of convincing them otherwise.
 

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Few clarifications -

Metered ramps are just like any other traffic light. Although most say "1 car per green" if you are lane splitting to the front and go through with the front car, it's not a problem. Some metered ramps have a carpool lane that normally do not have to stop for the meter light. But some do. The way to tell is to look for a stop line (fat white line). If the carpool onramp lane has a stop line, you still have to stop.

There has been a lot of confusion about the new fastrack lanes on the 110 and soon the 10 freeway near downtown LA. They are still HOV lanes - free for carpools and motorcycles. Unfortunately, the local authority has decided that even the free users have to have a fastrack transponder. Myself, working with the AMA and other organizations, are working to remove that restriction, at least for motorcycles. For the time being, if traffic is heavy, use the fastrack/HOV lane. If you get a ticket it will only be for the cost of the toll (no penalties are currently being added) and if you call or dispute the ticket, they will dismiss them for motorcycles (federal law prohibits motorcycles being charged a toll in HOV lanes).

Lane splitting/sharing are two different terms for the same thing. While they may be used to describe a slightly different technique, it is the same general practice. In general, like zippysport mentioned, if your bike will fit, you can go through... as long as you do not break any other laws. Crossing over solid lines or driving on the shoulder are usually illegal. Riding on or next to the solid lines that separate the carpool from the #1 lane is acceptable as long as you stay on one side of the line. You can pretty much lane share/lane split to your hearts content, just do it reasonably and safely. There's always going to be that cop that doesn't like motorcycles or doesn't understand the lane splitting practice that will write you a ticket, but it very rarely happens and are usually pretty easy to fight in court.

Some riders from NorCal have been working for years to get several agencies in CA to formally recognize lane splitting. Just last week the CHP published a lane splitting guide. Notice they mention specific speeds. These are only guidelines (and I actually happen to strongly disagree with how low these suggested speeds are, I find them much more dangerous than higher speeds under most circumstances).
http://www.chp.ca.gov/programs/lanesplitguide.html

Welcome to communist Kalifornia.
 
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