Biker filtering welcomed

Filtered: Cartoonist John Ditchburn's lighthearted look at this week's new laws allowing bikers to move through slow-moving or stopped traffic.
Filtered: Cartoonist John Ditchburn's lighthearted look at this week's new laws allowing bikers to move through slow-moving or stopped traffic.

BALLARAT’s motorbiking community has welcomed new laws brought in this week allowing motorcycles and scooters to filter to the front of slow-moving or stopped traffic.

George Fong from Ballarat Riders said Victoria had now caught up with the ACT and NSW in legalising a practice that would diminish the chances of motorcyclists being “rear-ended” and also reduce traffic congestion.

Ballarat Riders was involved in the early stages of consultation with the Victorian state government regarding the new laws.

Mr Fong said the laws were not “open slather” and there would an adjustment period.

“The caution I think for car drivers and motorcyclists is everybody has to respect each other in terms of how this happens. Motorcyclists need to be on their best behaviour – it’s not weaving through traffic, it’s filtering to the front,” he said.

“Certainly Ballarat Riders want to be ambassadors for what we consider a very safe and efficient practice.”

Under the new laws, motorbikes can ride through traffic where safe to do so and at no more than 30km/h. Previously, riders who lane-filtered were at risk of committing an offence.

Lane splitting, where a motorcylists weaves through traffics faster than 30km/h, will remain illegal.