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New York Cycling Links

New York City Traffic Laws for Cyclists

Bicycles are defined as vehicles under the New York State law. Cyclists have all the rights and are subject to all of the duties and regulations applicable to drivers of motor vehicles.

Cyclists in New York City must:

  • Ride on the street, not on the sidewalks (unless rider is age 12 or younger and the bicycle's wheels are less than 26 inches in diameter).
  • Ride with traffic, not against it.
  • Obey all traffic signals, signs and pavement markings. Cyclists must come to a complete stop at red lights and stop signs. Cyclists are required by law to exercise due care to avoid colliding with pedestrians, motor vehicles or other cyclists.
  • Use marked bicycle lanes or paths when available, except when making turns or when it is unsafe to do so, etc. If the road is too narrow for a bicycle and a car to travel safely side by side, cyclists have the right to ride in the middle of the travel lane. Bicycling is permitted on all main and local streets throughout the City even when no designated route exists.
  • Not ride on expressways, drives, highways, interstate routes and thruways unless authorized by signs.
  • Not wear more than one earphone attached to an aud io device (e.g. radio, ipod, walkman)
  • Use the following safety and visibility equipment:
  • White headlight and red taillight must be used from dusk to dawn
  • Bell or horn (not whistle)
  • Working brakes
  • Reflective tires or reflectors
  • Helmets must be worn by children age 13 or younger, and helmets are strongly recommended for all others.

Download a complete listing of New York City bicycle rules:

For more information click here

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