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Idaho Bike Laws

IDAHO BICYCLE LAWS

Right to the Road

  • Idaho bicyclists generally have the same rights, and same duties, as drivers of motor vehicles.

Prohibitions

  • Bicycles may only carry the number of persons for which it is designed, except an adult may carry a child in a backpack or sling.
  • Cyclists cannot hang onto or attach themselves to vehicles or ride so close as to present a danger

Helmets

  • There is no requirement for helmets for anyone on a bicycle

Alcohol

  • Idaho’s DUI statute does not apply to bicyclists.
  • Local ordinances may impact impaired cyclists

Where to Ride

  • Bicycles are to ride as close as practicable to the right side of the roadway except when overtaking another bicyclist, when preparing to make a left turn, when necessary to avoid a fixed or slow moving object or vehicle or when riding in a substandard width lane.
  • On one-way roads bicyclists may ride are near the left hand side of the roadway as is practicable.

Sidewalks

  • Sidewalk riding is generally permitted except where prohibited by local ordinance.
  • Cyclists  riding on a sidewalk must yield the right of way to pedestrians and must give an audible signal before passing.

Motor Vehicle Doors

  • No person may open the door of a motor vehicle unless it is safe to do so.

Bike Lanes, Bike Paths and Multi-Use Paths

  • Idaho bicyclists are generally allowed to use the roadway
  • In Boise City where a bike Lane is provided on or “immediately adjacent to” the roadway cyclists required to ride in or upon the bike lanes or paths roadway with exceptions for right and left turns and to avoid hazards.

Stop Signs and Traffic Control Devices

  • Bicyclists coming to a stop sign must slow, and if required for safety , stop.  If no car is approaching that causes an immediate hazard during the crossing of the intersection the cyclist may proceed through the stop-sign without stopping.  (Stop as yield)
  • Bicyclists coming to a red light must stop and yield to all other traffic. If safe the cyclist may proceed through the intersection  (Stop Light as Stop SIgn)

Signaling

  • Bicyclists must use hand/arm signals when turning and stopping unless the hand is needed to control the bicycle.

Drivers Overtaking Bicyclists

  • A vehicle passing a bicyclist must not do so in a way that interferes with the operation of the bicycle.
  • In Boise City, a driver must give a cyclist 3-Feet clearance to pass.  

 Bicycles Passing on the Right

  • A bicyclist may pass a car on the right if there is unobstructed pavement sufficient for 2 or more lines of vehicles and the pass may be done safely.
  • In Boise City it is legal to pass on the right.

Group Riding

  • Bicyclists may not ride more than 2 abreast, must not impede the “normal and reasonable movement” of traffic and must stay within a single lane..

Equipment

  • Every bicycle must be equipped with a white front facing headlight visible from at least 500 feet when used at nighttime..
  • Every bicycle must have a red reflector clearly visible from the rear of the bicycle
  • In Boise City, every bicycle shall be equipped with a brake which will stop it in twenty five feet (25′) at ten (10) miles per hour on dry, level, clean pavement;

Electric Assist Bikes

  • Idaho Law (Idaho Code 49-106) defines an electric assisted bicycle as an electric motor-driven vehicle equipped with operable pedals, a seat or saddle for the rider, no more than three wheels in contact during travel. In addition, the vehicle must be equipped with an electric motor that is capable of applying a power output of no greater than 750 watts, and that is incapable of propelling the vehicle at a speed greater than 28 miles per hour on level ground
  • Bicyclists may use a  e-bikes in the same matter as traditional bicycles but local ordinance may prohibit them from specific pathways.

Comments

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Charlie Thomas Apr 03, 2020

What is worse – the underlying act or the coverup? A few days ago, we received a request for help from Eames Bennett, a Ph.D. Candidate at Texas A&M University. Recently, Eames was riding his bike home in College Station, Texas. At the same time, a family was walking their unleashed dogs next to a […]

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Timmy Finch Apr 02, 2020

My first tip should have been the text I received from my father-in-law. He was looking for suggestions on bikes that he and my mother-in-law could get and ride. They’ve had bikes before but those were left to succumb to the salt air and rust, abandoned outdoors right next to the best intentions to ride […]

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Andy Singer
Daniel Brazil Mar 27, 2020

[Self Portrait by Andy Singer] What do a cartoonist and a high school computer technology teacher have in common? A passion for cycling and bicycle advocacy. Andy Singer, cartoonist and illustrator and Ian Buck, podcaster and high school teacher, are both co-chairs of the St. Paul Bicycle Coalition, founded in 2010. They’re two dedicated advocates […]

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Brendan Kevenides Mar 27, 2020

We all need some space.  In these strange times when a unique virus has shuttered my city, Chicago, and many others around the world, one of the more precious commodities is space, particularly outdoor space.  Yesterday, Chicago experienced one of those sunny, warm(ish) days that we always seem to get in March where throngs of […]

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Daniel Brazil Mar 24, 2020

It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Minnesota. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact Minnesota bicycle crash attorney Daniel Brazil directly. Right to […]

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Texas Pick Up Almost Runs Over Children
Charlie Thomas Mar 20, 2020

One look at this video is all you need to see why this parent reached out to Bike Law with serious concerns about a Dallas driver. Even as a bike accident lawyer that has dealt with many cases of dangerous driving, this video made me shudder in fear. The cycling dad was riding with a […]

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