home
Oregon Bicycle Laws


Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) Pertaining to Bicycles

814.400: Application of vehicle laws to bicycles
814.405: Status of electric assisted bicycle
814.410: Unsafe operation of bicycle on sidewalk; penalty
814.420: Failure to use bicycle lane or path; exceptions; penalty
814.430: Improper use of lanes; exceptions; penalty
814.440: Failure to signal turn; exceptions; penalty
814.450: Unlawful load on bicycle; penalty
814.460: Unlawful passengers on bicycle; penalty
814.470: Failure to use bicycle seat; penalty
814.480: Nonmotorized vehicle clinging to another vehicle; penalty
814.484: Meaning of “bicycle” and “operating or riding on a highway”
814.485: Failure to wear protective headgear; penalty
814.486: Endangering bicycle operator or passenger; penalty
814.487: Exemptions from protective headgear requirements
814.488: Citations; exemption from requirement to pay fine
814.489: Use of evidence of lack of protective headgear on bicyclist

814.400 Application of vehicle laws to bicycles.

(1) Every person riding a bicycle upon a public way is subject to the provisions applicable to and has the same rights and duties as the driver of any other vehicle concerning operating on highways, vehicle equipment and abandoned vehicles, except:

    (a) Those provisions which by their very nature can have no application.
    (b) When otherwise specifically provided under the vehicle code.

(2) Subject to the provisions of subsection (1) of this section:

    (a) A bicycle is a vehicle for purposes of the vehicle code; and
    (b) When the term “vehicle” is used the term shall be deemed to be applicable to bicycles.

(3) The provisions of the vehicle code relating to the operation of bicycles do not relieve a bicyclist or motorist from the duty to exercise due care. [1983 c.338 §697; 1985 c.16 §335]

Return to TOP

814.405: Status of electric assisted bicycle.

An electric assisted bicycle shall be considered a bicycle, rather than a motor vehicle, for purposes of the Oregon Vehicle Code, except when otherwise specifically provided by statute. [1997 c.400 §4]

Return to TOP

814.410: Unsafe operation of bicycle on sidewalk; penalty.

(1) A person commits the offense of unsafe operation of a bicycle on a sidewalk if the person does any of the following

    (a) Operates the bicycle so as to suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and move into the path of a vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.
    (b) Operates a bicycle upon a sidewalk and does not give an audible warning before overtaking and passing a pedestrian and does not yield the right of way to all pedestrians on the sidewalk.
    (c) Operates a bicycle on a sidewalk in a careless manner that endangers or would be likely to endanger any person or property.
    (d) Operates the bicycle at a speed greater than an ordinary walk when approaching or entering a crosswalk, approaching or crossing a driveway or crossing a curb cut or pedestrian ramp and a motor vehicle is approaching the crosswalk, driveway, curb cut or pedestrian ramp. This paragraph does not require reduced speeds for bicycles at places on sidewalks or other pedestrian ways other than places where the path for pedestrians or bicycle traffic approaches or crosses that for motor vehicle traffic.
    (e) Operates an electric assisted bicycle on a sidewalk.

(2) Except as otherwise specifically provided by law, a bicyclist on a sidewalk or in a crosswalk has the same rights and duties as a pedestrian on a sidewalk or in a crosswalk.

(3) The offense described in this section, unsafe operation of a bicycle on a sidewalk, is a Class D traffic violation. [1983 c.338 §699; 1985 c.16 §337; 1997 c.400 §7; 2005 c.316 §2]

Return to TOP

814.420: Failure to use bicycle lane or path; exceptions; penalty.

(1) Except asprovided in subsections (2) and (3) of this section, a person commits the offense of failure to use a bicycle lane or path if the person operates a bicycle on any portion of a roadway that is not a bicycle lane or bicycle path when a bicycle lane or bicycle path is adjacent to or near the roadway.

(2) A person is not required to comply with this section unless the state or local authority with jurisdiction over the roadway finds, after public hearing, that the bicycle lane or bicycle path is suitable for safe bicycle use at reasonable rates of speed.

(3) A person is not in violation of the offense under this section if the person is able to safely move out of the bicycle lane or path for the purpose of:

    (a) Overtaking and passing another bicycle, a vehicle or a pedestrian that is in the bicycle lane or path and passage cannot safely be made in the lane or path.
    (b) Preparing to execute a left turn at an intersection or into a private road or driveway.
    (c) Avoiding debris or other hazardous conditions.
    (d) Preparing to execute a right turn where a right turn is authorized.
    (e) Continuing straight at an intersection where the bicycle lane or path is to the right of a lane from which a motor vehicle must turn right.

(4) The offense described in this section, failure to use a bicycle lane or path, is a Class D traffic violation. [1983 c.338 §700; 1985 c.16 §338; 2005 c.316 §3]

Return to TOP

814.430: Improper use of lanes; exceptions; penalty.

(1) A person commits the offense of improper use of lanes by a bicycle if the person is operating a bicycle on a roadway at less than the normal speed of traffic using the roadway at that time and place under the existing conditions and the person does not
ride as close as practicable to the right curb or edge of the roadway.

(2) A person is not in violation of the offense under this section if the person is not operating a bicycle as close as practicable to the right curb or edge of the roadway under any of the following circumstances:

    (a) When overtaking and passing another bicycle or vehicle that is proceeding in the same direction.
    (b) When preparing to execute a left turn.
    (c) When reasonably necessary to avoid hazardous conditions including, but not limited to, fixed or moving objects, parked or moving vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, animals, surface hazards or other conditions that make continued operation along the right curb or edge unsafe or to avoid unsafe operation in a lane on the roadway that is too narrow for a bicycle and vehicle to travel safely side by side. Nothing in this paragraph excuses the operator of a bicycle from the requirements under ORS 811.425 or from the penalties for failure to comply with those requirements.
    (d) When operating within a city as near as practicable to the left curb or edge of a roadway that is designated to allow traffic to move in only one direction along the roadway. A bicycle that is operated under this paragraph is subject to the same requirements and exceptions when operating along the left curb or edge as are applicable when a bicycle is operating along the right curb or edge of the roadway.
    (e) When operating a bicycle alongside not more than one other bicycle as long as the bicycles are both being operated within a single lane and in a manner that does not impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic.
    (f) When operating on a bicycle lane or bicycle path.

(3) The offense described in this section, improper use of lanes by a bicycle, is a Class D traffic violation. [1983 c.338 §701; 1985 c.16 §339]

Return to TOP

814.440: Failure to signal turn; exceptions; penalty.

(1) A person commits the offense of failure to signal for a bicycle turn if the person does any of the following:

    (a) Stops a bicycle the person is operating without giving the appropriate hand and arm signal continuously for at least 100 feet before executing the stop.
    (b) Executes a turn on a bicycle the person is operating without giving the appropriate hand and arm signal for the turn for at least 100 feet before executing the turn.
    (c) Executes a turn on a bicycle the person is operating after having been stopped without giving, while stopped, the appropriate hand and arm signal for the turn.

(2) A person is not in violation of the offense under this section if the person is operating a bicycle and does not give the appropriate signal continuously for a stop or turn because circumstances require that both hands be used to safely control or operate the bicycle.

(3) The appropriate hand and arm signals for indicating turns and stops under this section are those provided for other vehicles under ORS 811.395 and 811.400.

(4) The offense described under this section, failure to signal for a bicycle turn, is a Class D traffic violation. [1983 c.338 §703; 1985 c.16 §341]

Return to TOP

814.450: Unlawful load on bicycle; penalty.

(1) A person commits the offense of having an unlawful load on a bicycle if the person is operating a bicycle and the person carries a package, bundle or article which prevents the person from keeping at least one hand upon the handlebar and having full control at all times.

(2) The offense described in this section, unlawful load on a bicycle, is a Class D traffic violation. [1983 c.338 §704]

Return to TOP 

814.460: Unlawful passengers on bicycle; penalty

(1) A person commits the offense of unlawful passengers on a bicycle if the person operates a bicycle and carries more persons on the bicycle than the number for which it is designed or safely equipped.

(2) The offense described in this section, unlawful passengers on a bicycle, is a Class D traffic violation. [1983 c.338 §705]

Return to TOP

814.470: Failure to use bicycle seat; penalty.

(1) A person commits the offense of failure to use a bicycle seat if the person is operating a bicycle and the person rides other than upon or astride a permanent and regular seat attached to the bicycle.

(2) A person operating an electric personal assistive mobility device is not subject to this section.

(3) The offense described in this section, failure to use bicycle seat, is a Class D traffic violation. [1983 c.338 §706; 2003 c.341 §13]

Return to TOP

  814.480: Nonmotorized vehicle clinging to another vehicle; penalty.

(1) A person commits the offense of nonmotorized vehicle clinging to another vehicle if the person is riding upon or operating a bicycle, coaster, roller skates, sled or toy vehicle and the person clings to another vehicle upon a roadway or attaches that which the person is riding or operating to any other vehicle upon a roadway.

(2) The offense described in this section, nonmotorized vehicle clinging to another vehicle, is a Class D traffic violation. [1983 c.338 §707]

Return to TOP

814.484: Meaning of “bicycle” and “operating or riding on a highway.”

(1) For purposes of ORS 814.485, 814.486, 815.052 and 815.281, “bicycle” has the meaning given in ORS 801.150 except that:

    (a) It also includes vehicles that meet the criteria specified in ORS 801.150 (1) to (4) but that have wheels less than 14 inches in diameter.
    (b) It does not include tricycles designed to be ridden by children.

(2) For purposes of the offenses defined in ORS 814.485, 814.486 and 815.281 (2), a person shall not be considered to be operating or riding on a bicycle on a highway or on premises open to the public if the person is operating or riding on a three-wheeled nonmotorized vehicle on a beach while it is closed to motor vehicle traffic. [1993 c.408 §§3a,3b]

Return to TOP

814.485: Failure to wear protective headgear; penalty.

(1) A person commits the offense of failure of a bicycle operator or rider to wear protective headgear if the person is under 16 years of age, operates or rides on a bicycle on a highway or on premises open to the public and is not wearing protective headgear of a type approved under ORS 815.052.

(2) Exemptions from this section are as provided in ORS 814.487.

(3) The offense described in this section, failure of a bicycle operator or rider to wear protective headgear, is a traffic violation punishable by a maximum fine of $25. [1993 c.408 §2; 1995 c.581 §1]

Return to TOP

814.486: Endangering bicycle operator or passenger; penalty.

(1) A person commits the offense of endangering a bicycle operator or passenger if:

    (a) The person is operating a bicycle on a highway or on premises open to the public and the person carries another person on the bicycle who is under 16 years of age and is not wearing protective headgear of a type approved under ORS 815.052; or
    (b) The person is the parent, legal guardian or person with legal responsibility for the safety and welfare of a child under 16 years of age and the child operates or rides on a bicycle on a highway or on premises open to the public without wearing protective headgear of a type approved under ORS 815.052.

(2) Exemptions from this section are as provided in ORS 814.487.

(3) The offense described in this section, endangering a bicycle operator or passenger, is a traffic violation punishable by a maximum fine of $25. [1993 c.408 §3; 1995 c.581 §2]

Return to TOP

814.487 Exemptions from protective headgear requirements.

A person is exempt from the requirements under ORS 814.485 and 814.486 to wear protective headgear, if wearing the headgear would violate a religious belief or practice of the person. [1995 c.581 §4]

Return to TOP

814.488: Citations; exemption from requirement to pay fine.

(1) If a child in violation of ORS 814.485 is 11 years of age or younger, any citation issued shall be issued to the parent, legal guardian or person with legal responsibility for the safety and welfare of the child for violation of ORS 814.486, rather than to the child for violation of ORS 814.485.

(2) If a child in violation of ORS 814.485 is at least 12 years of age and is under 16 years of age, a citation may be issued to the child for violation of ORS 814.485 or to the parent, legal guardian or person with legal responsibility for the safety and welfare of the child for violation of ORS 814.486, but not to both.

(3) The first time a person is convicted of an offense described in ORS 814.485 or 814.486, the person shall not be required to pay a fine if the person proves to the satisfaction of the court that the person has protective headgear of a type approved under ORS 815.052. [1993 c.408 §§3c,7]

Return to TOP

814.489: Use of evidence of lack of protective headgear on bicyclist.

Evidence of violation of ORS 814.485 or 814.486 and evidence of lack of protective headgear shall not be admissible, applicable or effective to reduce the amount of damages or to constitute a defense to an action for damages brought by or on behalf of an injured bicyclist or bicycle passenger or the survivors of a deceased bicyclist or passenger if the bicyclist or passenger was injured or killed as a result in whole or in part of thea fault of another. [1993 c.408 §8]

Return to TOP

- Daily bike news since 2005 -
BikePortland.org is a production of
PedalTown Media Inc.
321 SW 4th Ave, Ste. 401
Portland, OR 97204

Powered by WordPress. Theme by Clemens Orth.
Subscribe to RSS feed


Original images and content owned by Pedaltown Media, Inc. - Not to be used without permission.