Less-Known Arizona Bicycle Laws to Learn About
Arizona cyclists are expected to familiarize themselves with their state’s bicycle laws before taking to the road. Many of these policies are self-evident, however, many others are less commonly discussed and may go unnoticed by cyclists across the state. Taking a moment to familiarize yourself with these less-known bicycle laws is vital to ensuring you don’t accidentally break the law.
State-Wide Bicycle Laws
Beyond the policies we’ll discuss here, it’s important to remember that in Arizona, cyclists using the roadway are governed by traffic laws just as any other vehicle would be. This means that all signage and laws apply to bikes—speed limits, stop signs, Arizona’s right of way laws, etcetera, which all co-exist with unique bicycle laws:
- Seats are more than just conveniences; under A.R.S. 28-813, all bicycles in Arizona must not only possess approved, standardized bicycle seats, but furthermore must be used in their intended fashion. This means that doubling up on a bicycle is a no-go; if a bike is intended for one cyclist, it may only possess one seat, and if it possesses one seat, it can only be used by one person at a time, with no allowances for passengers.
- “Skitching” is illegal in Arizona (skitching meaning to hold on or otherwise attach to a roadway vehicle while biking). This holds true even when you have permission from the vehicle doing the towing; there are no exceptions to this law, so stick to your own two legs when propelling your bike.
- Arizona’s bicycle lane laws outline a few key policies for bikers to follow. Some, such as sticking to the right-hand side of the road as much as possible, are obvious—others, however, are less commonly known. For one, bikers are actually allowed to ride side-by-side in groups of two in most cases; on bicycle-exclusive lanes and paths, there is no limitation on side-by-side riders.
Unique Local Policies
Many bicyclists can be confused by local ordinances and policies, which often differ from those enacted at a state-wide level. As such, it’s vital that you perform research whenever moving to a new locale (or simply visiting one via bike) within Arizona. If you have questions about specific laws, it’s always best to consult an Arizona bicycle accident attorney; barring that, there are a few unique local policies which are especially significant:
- While Arizona doesn’t mandate bicycle helmet usage, in Tucson, Sierra Vista, Yuma, and Pima County, it is mandatory for minors to use bicycle helmets while riding.
- Similarly, while Arizona allows bicyclists to use sidewalks reasonably (with obvious exceptions where traffic signage says otherwise), Tucson prohibits sidewalk usage for cyclists entirely.
Arizona Bicycle Accidents
Because of the complexity of ordinances and the interactions governing car-bicycle interactions, bicycle accidents can be surprisingly complex to work out from a legal perspective. However, that doesn’t change the fact that you’re likely to be injured, so you should know your rights as an Arizona bicyclist. You can file a personal injury claim and seek compensation for any and all losses you might experience, whether they be bills for bicycle repairs/ replacements or suffering endured in the hospital. ELG’s experienced bicycle accident attorneys will stand with you every step of the way, so give us a call today at (623) 321-0566 to schedule a free consultation and learn more about the bicycle accident claims process.