Just like motorists, cyclists are permitted to ride on the road and are expected to obey the road rules and regulations that are in place for everyone’s safety.

Motorists are required to treat cyclists as if they were any other vehicle, including giving way when required and keeping a safe distance.

Cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians do not have the same protection as a car during a collision, which makes them vulnerable road users.

Cyclists should:

  • obey the road rules, such as stopping at all red traffic lights
  • wear a helmet and brightly coloured clothing
  • use lights when cycling at night
  • ride predictably and indicate to motorists before changing direction or turning
  • keep your brakes and tyres in good working order
  • install a bell for safety
  • anticipate driver’s actions.

Drivers should:

  • be patient and give cyclists a clearance of at least 1 metre when passing them at 60km/h or less and 1.5 meters when passing 60km/h or more
  • watch out for cyclists at intersections and roundabouts
  • check behind you for cyclists before opening your car door
  • anticipate cyclist’s actions.

Don’t think fines are only for motorists

Under the ACT Road Rules a number of offences exist in relation to cyclists.

ACT Policing issues Traffic Infringement Notices (TINs) and official Cautions to cyclists who do not obey the road rules.

The most common TIN and Cautions issued to cyclists are for:

  • not wearing a helmet
  • having a passenger that's not wearing a helmet
  • riding a bike which does not have the proper equipment, such as front and back lights or a warning device.

The ACT Road Rules Handbook makes it clear the information in the handbook applies to cyclists as well as drivers. 

Metre matters rule

Motorists are required to provide a minimum lateral distance of one metre when overtaking a cyclist in speed zones at or below 60km/h and one and a half metres in speed zones above 60km/h.


Riding across pedestrian crossing

Cyclists are able to ride slowly across pedestrian crossings (at no more than 10km/h).


For more information on safe cycling, visit the Justice and Community Safety website.

ACT Policing Online News

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