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West Virginia Motorcycle Laws  

Motorcycle laws aim to provide protection to riders and others on the road with them. To obtain a motorcycle license, most people need to learn these laws and are expected to follow them. Consider a refresher on West Virginia motorcycle laws and what they could mean to your pursuit of compensation if you suffered an injury caused by another person. Talk to a Charleston motorcycle accident attorney from Salango Law today.

Key Motorcycle Laws in West Virginia

The West Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles maintains a set of requirements for all people who use motorcycles. In fact, to operate one on a public road, you must have a motorcycle endorsement (represented as an F endorsement) on your driver’s license, or you must have a Class F motorcycle-only driver’s license.

Getting a Motorcycle License

Those who wish to obtain a motorcycle license must complete a skills test to obtain one or complete a Rider Course as a component of a Motorcycle Safety Program. Anyone under the age of 18 must complete a Level II Graduated Driver’s Licensing Program to obtain a license in the state.

Motorcycle Helmet Laws in West Virginia

Under West Virginia law, motorcycle riders and passengers must wear helmets that meet the Snell Safety Standards or the American National Standards Institute requirements. Helmets must be strapped on at the nose or chin. Operating a motorcycle without a helmet is considered illegal in West Virginia, regardless of a person’s age or skill level.

Riders must also utilize eye protection if they do not have a windshield on their bike, although a windscreen may qualify. This type of eye protection must be shatter-resistant and could be glasses, goggles, or a face shield.

Motorcycle Equipment Requirements

The motorcycle itself must be deemed safe for the roadway as well. To do that, it must meet these requirements:

  • If it has a windshield or windscreen, it must be shatter-resistant.
  • The motorcycle must have running lights or headlights on during the day.
  • The motorcycle must have headlamps and a tail lamp.
  • If a passenger is onboard, the motorcycle must have a passenger seat and footrests specifically for that rider.
  • The motorcycle must have turn signals.
  • The motorcycle must be equipped with mirrors on either side and handlebars that are no more than 15 inches higher than the seat.

Other Motorcycle Laws in West Virginia

Operation of a motorcycle on West Virginia roads means you agree to abide by the laws of the road. Some of the most important to know include the following:

  • West Virginia does not allow lane splitting, though it lacks a specific law to prohibit it outright.
  • Motorcycles must drive in the same direction as the flow of traffic and obey all speed limits posted.
  • Two motorcycles can ride next to each other in a single lane.
  • Motorcycles cannot travel next to another vehicle in the same lane, though.

Understanding West Virginia motorcycle laws is critical for anyone who plans to ride in the state. If you are a rider who suffered an injury, knowing these laws can help you seek out compensation for your losses.