Honolulu, Hawaii


RE: H.B. No. 2589

H.D. 2




Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Twenty-Ninth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2018

State of Hawaii




Your Committee on Transportation and Energy, to which was referred H.B. No. 2589, H.D. 2, entitled:




begs leave to report as follows:


The purpose and intent of this measure is to authorize the Department of Transportation to designate shoulders upon which motorcycles are allowed to drive under certain conditions.


Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Transportation; Street Bikers United Hawaii; Honolulu Harleys Owners Group; Sun Riders, LLC; Hawaii Street Riders Association; Moopuna O Hawaii Motorcycle Club; and thirty-three individuals. Your Committee received testimony in opposition to this measure from the Honolulu Police Department and AAA Hawaii.


Your Committee finds that due to their smaller size, motorcycles are sometimes hard to spot on roadways, which can result in other drivers not noticing the motorcycle and crashing into the motorcycle. Motorcyclists also have limited protections in accidents. Your Committee notes that a major source of these types of accidents is during heavy congestion, when drivers of cars or trucks fail to notice a motorcycle stopped in front of them. Your Committee also notes that motorcycles rely on airflow to cool their engines, and traffic congestion can increase the likelihood of a motorcycle stalling or overheating.


Your Committee heard concerns that allowing motorcycles to use shoulders in certain circumstances raises other safety issues. For example, other vehicles that might need to use the shoulder, such as emergency vehicles or broken down vehicles, might not notice a motorcyclist riding in the shoulder. Furthermore, driving conditions for shoulders can be very poor: the pavement could be poorly kept, and debris and trash often accumulate on the shoulder. Your Committee notes that the Department of Transportation, which will be responsible for designating the conditions and locations that motorcycles will be allowed to drive on shoulders, recognizes in its testimony many of these concerns and is committed to working with the Hawaii motorcycling community and law enforcement to determine what areas would be safe to designate shoulders for motorcycles to use under certain conditions.


As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Transportation and Energy that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 2589, H.D. 2, and recommends that it pass Second Reading and be referred to your Committee on Judiciary.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Transportation and Energy,