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House slams brakes on proposed California-style motorcycle law

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SALT LAKE CITY — A bill that would allow motorcycles to travel between lanes of traffic failed on the House floor late Monday night.

HB410, sponsored by Rep. Gage Froerer, R-Huntsville, was defeated on a 29-45 vote after short debate.

The bill would create a California-style law that would allow lane splitting — passing a vehicle moving the same direction in the same lane — when motorcycles determine they can safely make the move without exceeding 40 mph.

Supporters of the bill have cited studies that have concluded riding between lanes is actually safer than riding within slow-moving or stopped traffic and that lane splitting would lead to greater motorcycle commuting to cut down on traffic congestion.

But Rep. Paul Ray, R-Clearfield, said he had grave concerns with the bill.

"I've driven in California," Ray said, worrying the law would only add "danger to our roads."

— Katie McKellar

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