California gets some company
Via Motorcycle Daily, it looks like California will no longer stand alone in the US in allowing lane-splitting.
So kudos to the Arizona legislature for honoring the Goldwater legacy of personal liberty tempered by individual responsibility with Arizona House Bill 2475. Introduced by Harley-Davidson-riding Representative Jerry Weiers (say “wires,” R-District 12), the bill will legalize, for a one-year probationary period beginning January 1, 2011, lane-splitting in stopped traffic. It will only apply in counties with populations greater than 2 million (according to 2006 population estimates, this is just Maricopa county, with the Phoenix-Glendale-Scottsdale megalopolis). The bill sailed through the Transportation committee (which Weiers chairs) and the House Rules committee, and has been read to the State Senate as well. It's looking like there is little opposition to the bill so far, which makes sense: those who lean to the left should like the message of encouraging the lower environmental impact of motorcycle transportation, and those on the right should appreciate the individual-rights angle.
I don’t like lane-splitting in moving traffic, mainly because here in Southern California, no-signal-no-looking-lane-changing idiots are likely to run you over. On the other hand, I almost invariably lane-split at stoplights. As long as you exercise reasonable prudence, it’s not a big deal.