We have all seen lane splitting occur on the roads in Las Vegas. Even if you are not sure what exactly defines lane splitting, you have certainly been witness to a motorcycle driving in between cars.
That is what lane splitting is and it can occur while driving along Interstate 15 at high rates of speed and it also can occur while being stopped at a busy intersection such as Charleston and Rainbow Boulevards.
Of course, lane splitting by a motorcycle can happen anywhere in between as well.
It is unlawful for a motorcycle to split a lane by driving in between cars. It does not matter if they are traveling at 65 miles per hour on the highway or if they are simply coasting along between cars that are stopped.
It is illegal because it is a very dangerous situation for all drivers but especially so for the operator of the motorcycle. Just late last year, a motorcyclist was killed in a crash where police reports say the rider was splitting lanes before coming into the intersection where the crash happened.
If you are ever involved in an accident or are issued a traffic ticket for something that pertains to lane splitting in the state of Nevada please contact Ticket Busters. It is always helpful to have legal professionals on your side when you are in a legal jam or even issued a citation while driving.
The legal help that Ticket Busters will provide is second to none. We make what is often an overwhelming situation for NV drivers to be a much simpler and more manageable situation. It is already a pain and stressful situation when you get pulled over and receive a ticket from law enforcement.
No doubt, a million questions enter your mind such as:
- How much is this ticket going to cost?
- Do I have to go to court?
- How long is this process going to take?
- Will my insurance increase?
- How do I even pay the fine?
Fortunately, our downtown Las Vegas office can help you get answers to all of these questions.
And we can do much of the work on your behalf so that you can continue with your normal routine.
Ticket Busters can be reached in a variety of ways with the best way being to just drop by our office (no appointment is necessary).
At some point, we will need to meet with you to get the descriptive details of your case. If you call or email our office we will get that initial strategy meeting set up so that your case can get worked on.
What the Law Says About Lane Splitting
Lane splitting is extremely dangerous and is illegal in the state of Nevada. The law regarding this is written under NRS 486.351 and is titled:
Unlawful passing; driving abreast; prohibition on driving in extreme left lane; exceptions.
It is one of the many motorcycle laws in Nevada. There are a few sub points to this Nevada Revised Statute. The first one is:
- A person, except a police officer in the performance of his or her duty, shall not drive a motorcycle or moped between moving or stationary vehicles occupying adjacent traffic lanes.
This is the main point of the law and one of the most specific examples of when lane splitting occurs.
Most often the defiance of this law can be found while cars are sitting idle at a traffic light, especially during rush hour when traffic is at the highest level. Impatient motorcycle drivers will work from any angle they can to beat traffic and get to the front of the line of cars waiting for a light to turn green. The easiest way for them to do this is to split the lanes by driving in between cars up to the front of the line.
When the light turns green, they are the first ones to cross the intersection. It surely is annoying for all traditional cars to watch this happen and no doubt some of those drivers wish they could do the same thing. Lane splitting is very dangerous which is why this is the most common time to see it occur.
Although there are some, most motorcycle drivers are not daredevils. Some motorcycle operators will perform wheelies and swerve in and out of traffic while driving extremely fast.
No doubt there are some aggressive drivers that enjoy the rush of being just inches off of the ground with no enclosure. Those types of drivers will most often be the culprits for violating the NRS and splitting lanes. But even some of the more responsible and laid-back drivers will sometimes be tempted to conduct the illegal act of lane splitting when they are stuck in traffic at a red light.
As this subpoint clearly addresses, a law enforcement policy officer is allowed to split a lane if that action is needed to perform their duties.
Consequences to Lane Splitting and Violating NRS 486.351
There are many repercussions to violating this statute and the least of them is getting a traffic ticket.
By dividing traffic and splitting lanes, the probability of an accident increases greatly. Because of that, law enforcement and Nevada lawmakers take this law very seriously.
So needless to say, the consequences of splitting lanes are great. Just because motorcycles are more nimble on the road and can fit between cars does not discount the serious threat that occurs when these actions are done.
Even something as minor as a driver opening up their car door while stopped at a light could cause damage and injury if the timing of that occurred while a motorcycle was splitting the lane. If something like this occurred, there would most likely be an extensive injury to the motorcycle driver as they are very unprotected.
Not only that though, but the driver of the car would also have damage to his car door as well. Being exposed with the door open, the driver could also suffer injuries. Even in the most basic of cases though, there is still unnecessary aggravation when an accident occurs. Drivers in nearby cars are affected as the ones involved in the accident have to stay stationary which blocks traffic.
All of this causes a lack of productivity and delays people from getting to where they need to get to. For the people actually involved, even if they are not hurt, they have to call and wait for the police to arrive. Once that is sorted out, they have to get their vehicles repaired and fixed.
Often times this means taking the vehicle to a body shop for repairs which leaves the driver without their car. That can cause the impacted driver to have to get a rental car which costs money and time. Also, regardless of who was at fault, if an insurance claim is made then most likely the insurance rates are going to increase.
The bottom line is that none of this is necessary if the driving laws in Nevada are adhered to. Of course, mistakes can happen and accidents will always occur but unnecessary ones should be avoided at all costs. Splitting lanes by motorcycle drivers is certainly an unnecessary action.
There are already enough accidents on the roadways of southern Nevada with thousands of people losing their lives each year. Scenarios like this change people’s lives forever so mitigating those risks is a responsibility for all Nevadans.
If you are injured due to negligence by a motorcycle driver or even involved in an accident then reach out to Ticket Busters. As we have discussed, being involved in an accident is quite annoying, time-consuming and can be expensive. There is no need to absorb these responsibilities on your own and that is especially true if you were not the one at fault.
Fines for Lane Splitting in Nevada
Highway patrol and local police departments such as the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department take splitting lanes very seriously. If one is caught and issued a citation the fines can start at $190.
That is simply the starting point with monetary numbers being much higher depending on the situation and if other offenses were charged. If the action was egregious enough, the driver could also be cited with “reckless driving” or another violation.
Multiple violations of this statute can also cause a Nevada driver to lose their license.
Getting Legal Help for your Traffic Citation
It is always a wise move to get legal representation whether you were cited a violation while driving a motorcycle or moped. The same goes if you were involved in an incident while driving a car that involved a motorcycle.
In any case, Ticket Busters can assist you. We’ve helped thousands of Nevadans over the years and will help you as well. We will investigate your case specifically and determine who truly was at fault.
Depending on the results of our investigation we can work to get your ticket changed to a non-moving violation or can fight the charges to get them reduced or possibly thrown out completely. Call our office at 702-666-6666 for a free case evaluation.