Ontario grants motorcyclists HOV lane privileges

Lane splitting still off the table

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Riding a motorcycle is about to become more convenient in Ontario , noting that Transportation Minister Jeff Yurek is planning to change the rules limiting motorcycles riding in HOV lanes on provincial highways.

Currently, Ontario is one of the few jurisdictions where single-rider motorcycles are not allowed in its high-occupancy lanes (riders carrying passengers are allowed). South of the border, for instance, it’s a federal rule that you can’t charge motorcycles — solo or otherwise — fees for using HOV lanes. Making things quite confusing, at least for those motorcyclists who have been ticketed for using high occupancy lanes in Canada’s most populous province, is that the city of Toronto does allow motorcycles — again, solo or otherwise — in its HOV lanes.

What this means is that the high-occupancy lanes on the 403, 404, 417 and the QEW could soon be open to bikers, which, according to Yurek, will increase safety, not to mention reduce congestion and tailpipe emissions. Now, if the City of Toronto would just follow through on its promise to allow lane filtering — lane splitting to us motorcyclists — in the GTA, the entire province might actually become biker-friendly.

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