As long as motorcycles and vehicles have shared the roads there have been safety issues.

Those driving on two wheels are at increased risk from their four wheel (or more) road companions who often don't see the smaller cycles until it's too late.

On the other hand, some motorcyclists have been known to create dangerous situations with excessive speed or risky driving maneuvers.

Now, two of those riding practices are set to become law in Minnesota.

Recently, Governor Tim Walz signed HF 5374 into law, making Minnesota the sixth state to legalize lane splitting and lane filtering, starting July 1, 2025.

So what are lane splitting and lane filtering?

According to the American Motorcyclist Association:

'Lane splitting is riding a motorcycle between clearly marked lanes for traffic traveling in the same direction.

Lane filtering is riding a motorcycle between stopped motor vehicles to the front of the pack, typically at a signalized intersection.'

Under the new Minnesota law, the maneuvers are allowed 'only if the operation of the motorcycle does not exceed 40 miles per hour and is operated at no more than 15 miles per hour over the speed of traffic'.

It also permits motorcycles to 'overtake of or pass another vehicle within the same traffic lane, or between two parallel lanes of moving or stationary traffic headed in the same direction. Motorcycles may, with the consent of both drivers, be operated not more than two abreast in a single traffic lane if the vehicles fit safely within the designated space of the lane'.

The law also adds penalties for drivers who try to block motorcyclists, stating that 'no motor vehicle may be driven or operated in a manner so as to deprive a motorcycle of the full use of a traffic lane. An operator of a motor vehicle that intentionally impedes or attempts to prevent any operator of a motorcycle from operating a motorcycle is guilty of a petty misdemeanor'.

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The Minnesota Department of Public Safety will use money from the motorcycle safety fund to further educate the public on this change - from billboards to pamphlets and online safety videos.

Minnesota will join California, Utah, Montana, Arizona, and Colorado as states that legally allow the practices

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