Bicycles are considered vehicles and are therefore subject to Ontario traffic law. Understanding bicycle laws, and thinking of your bicycle as a vehicle will help you to avoid an accident.
Here are some facts you need to know:
- Bicycles must stop for red lights and stop signs.
- Cyclists must always signal when turning.
- Cyclists must stop for school buses, streetcars, pedestrians and crosswalks.
- Bicycles must have a white front light and a red rear light half an hour before sunset and after sunrise.
- Bikes must have white reflector tape on the front forks and reflective tape on the rear forks.
- Your bike must have a bell or a horn as well as at least one brake system on the rear wheel.
- Bikes made for one are not allowed to carry passengers. That means no one is allowed to be sitting on your handlebars!
- All cyclists under the age of 18 must wear a bicycle helmet. Parents and guardians shall not knowingly permit cyclists under 16 to ride without a helmet.
- You must be able to have both hands on your handlebars. This means no carrying purses, packages or groceries if they prevent you from having both hands on your bike.
- You’re not allowed to ride your bike on the sidewalk or curb. As a vehicle, you have to make sure to stick to the road or designated cycling paths.
If you were injured as a cyclists, get the information you need to receive the compensation you deserve ordering our book Spinning Out of Control: The Ontario Bicycle Accident Handbook. In this book, learn about safety tips; the legal and insurance issues that surround cycling in Ontario; and how to make an insurance claim if you have been badly injured.