Road rules (for BikeGals)
Just like drivers, cyclists have a group of rules that govern how we cycle on the road. Granted, they’re not as detailed as car road rules and we don’t need to sit a test to get out there, but it’s important we pay attention to them.
When cyclists do the right thing, they infuriate drivers less and the road is a much nicer place for all of us (plus it might encourage some of those grumpy drivers to don a helmet and join the cycling masses!).
- Wear a helmet, correctly fastened, at all times. This isn’t negotiable. It’s common sense and it’s the law. If you ride without a helmet not only are you in danger of getting your brain mashed, but you’re up for a $66 fine from the NSW government.
- If you’re riding with a buddy, you can ride beside each other but make sure there’s no more than 1.5m between you.
- If you want to overtake two cyclists riding side by side, you may, as long as it’s safe to do so.
- When there’s a bicycle lane, you must use it.
- When there’s a transit lane go ahead and use it!
- You can also use most bus lanes, except the lanes that clearly state ‘Buses Only’.
- Ride on a footpath only under the following conditions: you’re twelve years old or below, you’re supervising someone who’s twelve years old or below, or a sign says you’re allowed share the footpath.
- If it’s a shared path, keep to the left and remember this: the pedestrian is queen. Take care to ride gently around the pedestrian.
- If you’re turning a corner, indicate clearly with your arm which way you’re going.
- If you’re cycling around a roundabout, you’re allowed to leave it right from the left lane. Indicate very clearly as above.
- Like being in a car, give motorists and pedestrians right of way when they have it.
- When cycling on a road, make sure you’re a metre away from the kerb or parked car to avoid accidents.
- A red light is a red light. Stop at it. Don’t start cycling again until you get a green light. Stop signs, Give Way signs, Railway Crossings: they all apply to you the same way they do to drivers.
- Do not ride your bike under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- You must ride your bike facing forward with at least one hand on the handlebars (doesn’t matter which tricks you could do as a kid, no silly buggers on the roads, thanks).
- Your bike must have functioning breaks and a bell/horn/way of making noise.
- You can’t give people a ride on your bike unless your bike is specifically designed to take another person. And if you do have another person? They have to wear a helmet too.
- Don’t let yourself be towed by a car, it’s super dangerous and you’ll be hit with a fine.
Your rights on a bike
The road is there to share and you have just as much of a right to be there as any one of the cars behind you at the traffic lights.
Remember to be predictable and confident in your cycling, to indicate clearly and play by the rules.