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Wednesday, October 4, 2023


Bill to affect motorcyclists

The State Department of Transportation and Homeland Security is reviewing a bill in which motorcyclists would be allowed to ride in between lanes on Houston highways during times of high traffic.’

Communication senior Jesse McIntyre commutes to campus by motorcycle. He said the bill could get a lot of people hurt.

‘ ‘Sometimes I don’t really follow the rules myself, and because of that I know cutting through traffic can get people aggravated. I’ve even had people trying to open their door on me and they swerve at you,’ McIntyre said. ‘I actually got bumped just the other day by a lady in a minivan and she was just mad because I was going around.’

Management information systems senior Ahmad Hasib said the bill offers a viable solution to Houston’s traffic troubles.

‘I think it’s a good idea. Most people find it dangerous, but you need to understand what (proponents of the bill) are actually trying to accomplish,’ Hasib said. ‘They don’t want a motorcycle to drive between two cars going 70 mph on the freeway. It’s for when there is a traffic jam and cars are bumper to bumper. Twhey want motorcycles to be able to drive between the lanes for safety and efficiency.”

As the economy lingers in recession, McIntyre said it pays to downsize to motorcycles from a truck. His truck gets from 10 to 15 miles per gallon, while his Yamaha R1 motorcycle gets between 35 and 50 mpg.

‘ ‘I have to drive a lot, and without my truck I save about $500 every month now. Before, (when gas prices were higher) I use to save at least $1,000 monthly,’ McIntyre said.

Hasib said when he rides his bike, he’s not concerned with fuel efficiency.’

‘(Motorcycles) are more geared toward performance, so the gas mileage isn’t what people expect.’

For people like McIntyre who otherwise rely on trucks for transportation, fuel efficiency is more important.’

‘I have a (Ford) F150 that I need to use for my landscaping company.’ It’s a small V-8, and that thing is just a gas guzzler,’ McIntyre said.’

McIntyre said driving a motorcycle to UH everyday is one of the best choices he has made.’

‘Driving down HOV in my truck, it would take me anywhere from 45 minutes. to an hour to get to school, but now, with my motorcycle, I can get to school in 15 minutes,’ he said.’

In addition to convenience on the road, motorcycle parking is great for personal budgets, McIntyre said.

‘(Motorcycle commuters) use to pay $25 for parking permits, and then they raised prices to $50,’ he said. ‘Two semesters ago, UH got rid of about 25 of our parking spaces and then got rid of the permit fee altogether, so it’s really nice. We don’t have to pay for parking, but it still made people mad with the parking spaces they took away.”

Hasib said motorcycle parking could not get any better.’

‘Parking is amazing, I always have a place to park and I don’t have to park all the way in Lot 10 to get to the business school,’ Hasib said.’

With the parking and traffic benefits, commuting on a motorcycle makes sense to McIntyre. But he said without any experience, cutting through traffic could easily lead to injuries and accidents. ‘

Though Hasib disagrees with McIntyre on the legislative issue, the two share a strong sense of passion for their bikes.’

‘They are a lot of fun and it’s a stress reliever for me. I tend to get my mind focused on the bike, the road and the traffic. You have to be more focused riding a bike than driving a car so you don’t get hit by others,’ Hasib said. ‘It deviates my attention to other things – gets my mind off stressful things, making me stress free.’

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