Bike Light Laws in California

Bike Light Laws in California

When you ride a bike at night on a highway, sidewalk, or bikeway, California Vehicle Code § 21201(d) requires that your bicycle be equipped with a white light that is visible from a distance of 300 feet from the front and side of your bicycle. Alternatively, this white lamp can be attached to the bicycle rider, such as to a helmet, so long as it is still visible from 300 feet.

Additionally, your bicycle must be equipped with the following lights:

·         A red reflector or solid or flashing red light with a built-in reflector on the rear of the bike that is visible from a distance of 500 feet when in front of headlights on a motor vehicle

·         A white or yellow reflector on each pedal, shoe, or ankle that is visible from both the front and rear of the bicycle at a distance of 200 feet

·         A white or yellow reflector on each side of the bicycle on the forward portion of the bicycle and a white or red reflector on each side of the bicycle on the rear portion of the bicycle, unless the bicycle has forward and rear reflective tires, in which cases the side reflectors are unnecessary

Although California law does not require any additional lighting or precautions for bicyclists riding at night, you should avoid wearing dark clothing, which makes it more difficult for drivers to see you at night. Other recommended gear for night riding includes clear eyeglasses or safety glasses, as well the addition of reflective tape strips to your bag, the frame of your bicycle, and even your clothing. If you ride at night frequently, it may be useful to invest in a reflective vest, reflective gloves, and reflective sleeves, all of which are readily available. The more reflective you are, the more visible you will be to drivers.

While lights are not required by law during the day-time, they can be yet another line of defense when riding on the road. Front white lights of 300 lumens or more, and rear red lights of 50 lumens or more can help keep you visible during the day.

Bonnici Law Group has the experience, knowledge and reputation that you want and need when you are injured in a bike accident. We are here to help you build the strongest claim possible for compensation and obtain a positive outcome in your case. Do not hesitate to contact Bonnici Law Group at 619-259-5199 or help@bonnicilawgroup.com.

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