Road Rules

Road rules - An overview

Bike riders are only legally required to use a hand signal when they are turning or changing lanes to the right. But it is a good idea to also indicate when you're making a left turn or when you're stopping. Do a head check first, then put your arm out in a straight line straight line and point your hand towards the direction you are going.

Bike riders are permitted to ride two abreast as long as they are no more than 1.5 metres apart. If a bike lane is only wide enough to accommodate one rider, you must  ride single file. You may overtake on the left, provided the vehicle you are overtaking is not signalling a left turn or in the act of turning.

To learn the road rules that are applicable to your state, visit the website of your state transport authority or go to bicyclenetwork.com.au/roadrules

Road rules - The Essentials

Each state has slightly different road rules that bike riders must follow but there are several
that are common to all states.

Here are some of them:

  • You and any passengers riding with you must wear a 
    securely fitted Australian Standards approved bike helmet.
  • When riding at night or in conditions where the visibility 
    is poor, you must use a front light, rear light 
    and red rear reflector.
  • You must have a bell or similar warning device on your bike.
  • You must keep to the left of the lane you are riding in.
  • You must ride in an on-road bicycle lane if there 
    is one on a length of road going in the 
    same direction, unless impractical to do so.
  • You must stop at pedestrian crossings, 
    red lights and stop signs.

Good riding conduct

When riding in a group or on a shared path, use your voice and your bell as well as hand signals. When passing another rider, call out "Passing!" and overtake on the right with care. 
It is also common courtesy to point out potholes, road debris or upcoming obstacles.

Here are some other good conduct tips:

  • Wear bright and lightly coloured clothing.
  • Look out for drivers and passengers getting in 
    and out of parked cars and be aware 
    of the risk of car doors opening.
  • Allow at least one metre clearance 
    when riding past parked cars.