New Utah motorcycle ‘lane filtering’ law in effect next week

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Next week it will be legal for motorcycles to filter between stopped traffic at an intersection under certain conditions. The Department of Public Safety demonstrated the proper way to lane filter before the law goes into effect on Tuesday.

Parker Rose loves riding motorcycles recreationally, but admits riding in traffic can be a little scary.

“I get a little bit more nervous in having cars trying to swerve into my lane or other lanes,” he said.

He’s excited about Utah’s new lane filtering law, and believes it will allow motorcycles to move between two lanes to the front of stopped traffic. Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Mark Thompson said the law is designed to prevent motorcycles from being rear ended.

“The intent of the lane filtering law was to provide kind of a safety pocket for motorcycles as they approach stopped traffic,” Thompson said.

He said the intent is not for motorcyclists to simply move through traffic without waiting.

The law is only legal under certain conditions:

  • The speed limit must be at least 45 miles an hour or less
  • The vehicles a motorcyclist is passing must be stopped
  • A motorcyclists can’t be traveling more than 15 miles an hour while passing another vehicle
  • A motorcyclist must be traveling on a roadway with two or more lanes in the same direction

The Utah Department of Public Safety warns riders to be careful as they navigate a narrow and dynamic space at a slow speed, and encourages only experienced riders to try it.

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