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Why do motorcyclists crowd the centerline?

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Motorcycles

Why do motorcyclists crowd the centerline?

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
June 11, 2012


An article re-posted on DWI Hit Parade reports a jail appearance in southwestern Colorado after a 40-year-old Cortez woman allegedly struck and killed a couple on a motorcycle after drinking four beers and smoking a joint.

Crash investigators believe she crossed the centerline, although "The motorcycle was traveling eastbound close to the double-yellow line..."

Have you ever noticed a group of oncoming motorcycles and how the bike on the left side of the lane seems to be almost on top of the centerline? Is such a motorcycle operator "staking his claim" to his side of the road? Is he brave or stupid?

By "close to the centerline" I mean, if you dropped a plumb from the end of the left handlebar, it would hit the centerline. That "close"... Often that operator is riding in a group, a pack, of 3-4-5-6 motorcycles. Why doesn't he ride even just a little to the right?

The driver, who survived the crash, may be looking at 12 years behind bars. She is being held without bail. Now, there's a concept we ought to have around here...

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