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In the state of North Carolina, several laws apply specifically to motorcycle riders. These laws are designed to protect motorcycle riders and other road users and to ensure that motorcycles are operated safely on the roads. Some of the key motorcycle laws in North Carolina include:

Helmet law

In North Carolina, all motorcycle riders must wear a helmet that satisfies the standards of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). This law involves riders of all ages, and Motorcycle riders caught violating it can be subject to fines and other penalties.

The helmet law in North Carolina is designed to protect motorcycle riders from head injuries in the event of a crash. Studies have shown that helmet use can significantly reduce the risk of head injuries and fatalities in motorcycle accidents. By wearing a DOT-approved helmet, motorcycle riders in North Carolina can protect themselves and reduce the likelihood of severe injury or death in the event of a crash.

Lane splitting

Lane splitting refers to a motorcycle rider traveling between lanes of stopped or slow-moving vehicles or riding on the shoulder or median strip. Lane splitting is illegal in North Carolina. Motorcycle riders are required to stay in their designated lane unless they are passing another vehicle.

The lane-splitting law in North Carolina promotes the safety of motorcycle riders and other road users. Lane splitting can be dangerous because it can increase the risk of collision with other vehicles, especially at high speeds.

Lane sharing

Lane sharing, or riding side-by-side with another motorcycle in the same lane, is also illegal in North Carolina. Motorcycle riders are required to ride a single file in their designated lane.


In North Carolina, all motorcycle riders must carry liability insurance coverage. This means that motorcycle riders must have insurance covering their liability for damages or injuries they may cause to others while operating their motorcycle.

The minimum amount of liability insurance coverage includes the following:

  • $30,000 for injury or death of one person in an accident
  • $60,000 for injury or death of two or more people in an accident
  • $25,000 for property damage in an accident

These coverage limits apply per accident, and motorcycle riders must have coverage equal to these limits to comply with the law.

In addition to liability insurance, some motorcycle riders may purchase additional coverage, such as collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, or medical payments coverage. These types of coverage can protect the rider’s motorcycle and medical expenses in an accident.


In North Carolina, motorcycle handlebars must not be more than 15 inches above the seat when the motorcycle is stationary.

Headlight use

Motorcycle riders in North Carolina must always use their headlights, including during the day.

Final words

By following these laws, motorcycle riders in North Carolina can help to ensure their safety and the safety of other road users. It is essential for all motorcycle riders to be aware of these laws and to adhere to them when operating their motorcycle on the roads.

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