There are no explicit laws in Missouri that forbid lane splitting, but that does not mean that the act is safe.
To ride safely in heavily congested areas, you should understand the risks of lane splitting and how you can protect yourself.
What is lane splitting?
If you find yourself riding the white or yellow lines between two cars in parallel lanes, that is lane splitting. It is a great way to bypass slow-moving or stopped traffic, but it does come with risks.
What are the risks?
While lane splitting can reduce the chance of getting rear-ended, it may also increase your risk of getting hit. Splitting lanes in moving traffic is particularly dangerous. Other drivers may not see you and move in too close to the other vehicle, effectively smashing you between them. Additionally, lane splitting is not the same as riding on the shoulder. That is illegal in 49 states, including Missouri.
How can you stay safe?
Before you start lane splitting, you may want to consider the following safety tips:
- Wear plenty of safety gear with reflective surfaces
- Driving defensively at all times as if you assume no one else is paying attention
- Limit lane splitting to the far left lanes
- Keep your high-beam headlights on at all times
- Always pay attention to your surroundings
Blind spots are particularly dangerous for motorcycle riders. Try to avoid them wherever you can.
Motorcycle accidents often result in devastating injuries and losses. The more prepared you are for potential danger, the better.