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We Are Your Denver Lawyers

Can motorcyclists share lanes with cars in Colorado?

On Behalf of | May 10, 2022 | Auto Accidents

As a driver, you never want to do anything that could put you or others in harm’s way. You know that your vehicle is heavy and has the potential to cause serious injuries if you get into a crash.

One thing that you’ve noticed lately is motorcyclists who are using the same lanes as cars. They’re riding next to them or between them, scooting between spaces where there really is not another lane for them to use. In some states, sharing the lane like this is legal, because it gives motorcyclists more room to maneuver and get around traffic.

In Colorado, lane sharing in this manner is not legal. Lane splitting laws state that motorcyclists may not share a lane to overtake a motorist or to make use of extra room in the lane. Lane splitting is illegal.

What can motorists do to prevent crashes with motorcyclists attempting to share a lane?

It’s not your fault if you get into a crash with a motorcyclist who is trying to pass or overtake you in the same lane. The law is clear that lane splitting is considered dangerous in the state and isn’t allowed under any circumstances.

That being said, there are some tips you can apply that will help you reduce the risk of crashing if a motorcyclist does move into your space. These include:

  1. Checking your blind spots before making any maneuvers
  2. Listening for motorcyclists and recognizing when someone has moved into your lane space
  3. Avoiding sudden stops or weaving, even within your own lane

Dangerous riders could put themselves in harm’s way, so as a driver, you may want to report anyone who tries to split a lane or cling to your vehicle. It’s not legal for a rider to grab your vehicle, share a lane with you or even overtake you in the same lane because traffic is moving slowly. Though a motorcyclist may think that riding the way they are is safe, that’s not always the case and could lead to a crash.

If a motorcyclist does cause a crash, you may have a right to pursue compensation against them for their recklessness.