Interesting Read. Not sure if it's been posted already. http://www.news.com.au/national/on-...gap-between-cars/story-fndo4eg9-1226476525422 LANE splitting, in which of motorcyclists ride down the gap between lines of stalled traffic, could be legalised and even encouraged to help reduce congestion. It annoys some motorists and in limited circumstances could be dangerous. But federal MPs in Canberra today were told it was an option that had to be considered. And Victoria is close to permitting the practice, also known as "filtering". Shaun Lennard, chairman of the Australian Motorcycle Council and chair the federal Motorcycle Safety Consultative Committee, said laws had to be changed to encourage more users of PTWs - powered two wheels. "One initiative currently under consideration in Victoria is a trial of legalised filtering - that is, riding between stationery or very slow-moving lines of traffic," Mr Lennard said in a speech to MPs at a Canberra breakfast. "This is a common practice in the majority of major cities, yet in most cases it is technically illegal. "It's largely overlooked by police, and it's something that has worked for decades and makes sense. Some European countries have been looking at legitimising filtering." Mr Lennard said London and Paris were making it easier for cyclists and motorcyclists to use the cities' roads, and that European research had shown traffic congestion could be eased by increasing PTW numbers. But in Australia, "Last year we had the National Transport Commission release a detailed report on the future of transport in Australia, with all sorts of data and graphs showing changes and trends - a report which failed to make any reference to motorcycling. "This despite the fact that the number of registered motorcycles had grown by 7 per cent per year for the previous decade." A Belgian study last year looked at morning peak traffic on a major highway between a satellite city, Leuven, and Brussels. Detailed modelling calculated that if 10 per cent of the car users had instead been on motorcycles, congestion would have been reduced by around 40 per cent - a major saving for all road users. Mr Lennard said most Australian governments had not looked at similar policies despite a huge growth in the number of people - particularly women - now regularly riding motorbikes and scooters. He said there had been "a dramatic increase in the number of motorcycles and scooters on the roads" in the past decade. "In Australia, the number of registered motorcycles has almost doubled over the past 11 years to around 700,000. That's an annual increase of almost 7 per cent, which compares to an average annual increase in registrations across all vehicle types of around 3 per cent over the same period," said Mr Lennard. "Over the past decade, there have been two key demographic areas where the number of riders has increased dramatically - firstly the number of female riders, and secondly in the number of people aged over 50 (both male and female). "As many of the males over 50 years of age buying motorcycles are people who had ridden in their twenties, the tag returning riders is often applied collectively to this demographic. "However a substantial number of male riders over 50 and almost all of the women riders are in fact new to motorcycling. "Women have increasingly turned to motorcycling for both commuting and leisure purposes. It's been anecdotally reported that many women feel safer travelling to and from work by motorcycle than using public transport - literally riding to and from their own residence to the parking area of their place of employment. "The average age of a learner motorcyclist across is Australia, from the last data I had a year or so ago, was 32. "Scooter sales in Australia have been an area of significant growth. This has gone from around 600 new scooters a year in the 1990s, to a peak of over 15,000 new scooters three or four years ago, that has levelled now at still over 10,000 new scooters per year."