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Bicycle equipment

Information about the basic safety equipment that cyclists need for riding a bicycle in Victoria.

Bicycles must be fitted with basic safety gear and each rider must wear an approved and properly fitted helmet.

Note: People riding scooters and e-personal transporters must also wear helmets and have brakes, and a warning device, such as a bell.

See Wheelchairs, blades, scooters, skateboards and e-personal transporters.

Bicycle helmets

Cyclists must wear an approved bicycle helmet that is securely fitted and fastened to rider's head. People riding scooters and motor scooters with electric motors must also wear approved helmets.

Exemptions

A person may be exempted from wearing a helmet by VicRoads. Generally this will be accepted if there are medical reasons.

A person is also exempt from needing to wear a helmet if they are a member of a religious group and they are wearing a headdress typically worn by members of that group and wearing a helmet would be impractical.

Evidence of this exemption must be carried and produced if this is requested by an authorised person.

Helmets for bicycle passengers

Bicycle passengers must also wear approved and securely fastened helmets.

This includes passengers in a bicycle trailer.

Note: These rules is do not apply to paying passengers in 3 or 4 wheeled bicycles or people who are carrying an exemption from VicRoads.

Maximum penalty

Failing to wear an approved helmet is 5 penalty units.

If this matter is dealt with by issuing an infringement notice, the penalty is 1.25 penalty units.

Lights

At night or in hazardous weather conditions that affect visibility cyclists must display:

  • flashing or steady white light that's clearly visible for 200 metres from front of bicycle
  • flashing or steady red light (visible for 200 metres) on rear of bike
  • red reflector (visibility 50 metres when low beam vehicle light projected onto it).

Maximum penalty

Failing to use lights when driving at night is 5 penalty units.

If this matter is dealt with by issuing an infringement notice, the penalty is 1.25 penalty units.

Brakes and bells

Cyclists must also ensure that their bicycle has:

  • at least one working brake
  • a bell or horn or other warning device (working).

Maximum penalty

Failing to have brakes and warning bell is 5 penalty units.

If this matter is dealt with by issuing an infringement notice, the penalty is 1.25 penalty units.

Carrying passengers

Cyclists can not carry passengers unless the bicycle has been specially designed to carry extra passengers. Each passenger needs their own seat (and footrests or pedals).

See Carrying passengers.

More information

Legislation

Road Safety Road Rules 2017 (Vic)

  • r. 256—bicycle helmets
    • r. 256(1)—rider must wear an approved helmet
    • r. 256(3)—must not ride with a passenger who is not complying with the helmet rule
    • r. 256(4)—3 or 4 wheel bicycles may carry paying un-helmeted passengers
  • r. 257—riding with a person on a bicycle trailer
    • r. 257(2)—defines bicycle trailer
  • r. 258—equipment on a bicycle
  • r. 259—riding at night

See Road Safety Road Rules 2017 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

Road Safety (General) Regulations 2019 (Vic)

  • Schedule 7—Traffic infringements

See Road Safety (General) Regulations 2019 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

VicRoads

See VicRoads—Cyclist safety(opens in a new window).

Updated