Centre for Road Safety

Obey the road rules

Cyclists in NSW must obey the road rules. They must stop at red lights or stop signs, give way as indicated by road signs and give hand signals when changing direction. Under the Road Rules on the NSW legislation website, a bicycle is considered a vehicle and has the same road rules as other vehicles.


The helmet laws for cyclists of all ages in NSW help prevent head injuries and brain damage from falls and crashes. The Road Rules state that a bicycle rider on roads and road-related areas must wear an approved bicycle helmet securely fitted and fastened. This applies to all cyclists, regardless of age, including children on bicycles with training wheels and any child being carried as a passenger on a bike or in a bicycle trailer. 

Special road rules for cyclists


Cyclists are allowed to turn right from the left-hand lane. When passing each exit, cyclists must give way to any vehicle leaving the roundabout.

Transit lanes

Transit lanes are used for vehicles containing a certain number of people. These lanes may also be used by buses, taxis, hire cars, motorcycles, bicycles and emergency vehicles, no matter how many people are in them.


Bicycle lane signs have a picture of a bike with the word LANE underneath.

Bicycle lanes

When a bicycle lane is marked on the road and has bicycle lane signs, cyclists must use it unless it is impracticable to do so. Although these lanes are for bicycles, cars may use them for not more than 50 metres to enter or leave the road at a driveway or intersection.

Bus lanes

Bus lanes can also be used by bicycles, motorcycles, taxis, hire cars and vehicles operated by, or under the direction of transport authorities.

Bus-only lanes

When the words ‘Buses Only’ appear on a bus-lane sign, only buses are allowed to drive in these lanes.

Side by side

You are allowed to ride two abreast, but not more than 1.5 metres apart.


Children under 12 years of age can ride on a footpath. An adult rider who is supervising a cyclist under 12 may also ride with the young cyclist on the footpath. Cyclists are allowed to ride on footpaths where indicated by signs.

Shared paths

Across NSW shared paths can be used by both pedestrians and bicycle riders. Always travel at a speed that is safe for you and the pedestrians you encounter.