It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Alabama. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here).
This is a general overview of Alabama’s bicycle laws. To see them in their completion, please visit Alabama’s Department of Transportation. For any questions about this State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact Alabama’s Bike Law Attorney Danny Feldman directly.
Right to the Road
Bicycles are defined as vehicles and generally have the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicle drivers.
Where to Ride
- Bicyclists are required to ride as far to the right of the roadway as practicable.
- Bicyclists shall utilize any usable path for bicycles that has been provided adjacent to a roadway.
- Bicycles are prohibited from being ridden on the sidewalks. Check local ordinances for variations on this rule.
HOW TO RIDE
- Bicyclists shall not ride more than two abreast except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles.
- Bicyclists are required to slow down and come to a complete stop at stop signs and traffic devices signaling red.
- Bicyclists must signal when turning or coming to a stop.
Bicyclists Overtaking Cars
Bicyclists on roadways must exercise due care when passing a standing vehicle or one proceeding in the same direction.
Cars Overtaking Bicyclists
Motor vehicle drivers are required to pass bicyclists at least three (3) feet clearance on all roads with speed limits of 45 mph or less and no double yellow lines.
- Bicyclists under the age of 16 are required to wear a properly fastened helmet.
- At night, a bicycle must be equipped with a front white light visible from 500 feet away and a rear red reflector visible from 100 to 600 feet away.
- Every bicycle must have brakes which enable the bicyclist to make the braked wheels skid on dry, level, clean pavement.
- Clinging to motor vehicles while bicycling is not permitted.
- A bicycle may not carry more than the number of persons for which it is designed and handlebar riding is prohibited.
- Alabama’s DUI statute does apply to bicyclists as bicycles are defined as vehicles.