Motorcycle Lane Filtering is Now Legal in Montana
The warm spring-like temperatures have really got people thinking about getting out for a two-wheeled ride. As the days start getting longer and the temperatures begin getting warmer, more and more motorcycles will be hitting the road. Every year around this time we always want to remind motorists to be aware of motorcycles while driving. While you may think you can notice a vehicle in your mirrors before changing lanes. Motorcycles are not 1 ton of steel on wheels, like the vehicle you are behind the wheel of. Also, know that a motorcycle stands no chance in a collision with another vehicle.
Now, for my fellow motorcyclists. Even though we have to wait until October for the law to take effect. Montana has become one of only three states to make "lane filtering" legal. For those not familiar with lane filtering, it is defined as:
(When) drivers of two-wheeled motorcycles overtake stopped or slow-moving vehicles at a speed not greater than 20 mph, in order to "filter" between lanes of stopped traffic traveling in the same direction as conditions permit.
This simply means, that as long as the motorcyclist is going at a slow speed, they can drive in between stopped or slowed cars on the line that separates lanes.
According to KPAX, the bill reads:
AN ACT PROVIDING FOR MOTORCYCLE LANE FILTERING.
Section 1. Lane filtering for motorcycles. (1) An operator of a two-wheeled motorcycle may engage in lane filtering when:
(a) the operator of a two-wheeled motorcycle is on a road with lanes wide enough to pass safely;
(b) the overtaking motorcycle is not operated at a speed in excess of 20 miles an hour when overtaking the stopped or slow-moving vehicle; and
(c) conditions permit continued reasonable and prudent operation of the motorcycle while lane filtering.
(2) As used in this section, "lane filtering" means the act of overtaking and passing another vehicle that is stopped or traveling at a speed not in excess of 10 miles an hour in the same direction of travel and in the same lane.
Check out the following video out of Australia, that describe proper "lane filtering"
5 Places to Take Your RV in Montana