Safety is our top priority

The Highway Traffic Act (HTA)

By definition, a bicycle is considered a “vehicle” in the HTA, and cyclists in Ontario are required to comply with it’s legislation just like any other vehicle.

Some of the legislation that applies includes:

  • Bicyclists are prohibited from riding their bike across a road or on a crosswalk – you must dismount and walk your bicycle across.
  • All cyclists to be aware of, and use, appropriate hand signals for all turns.
  • Police officers have the authority to stop and confirm the identity of bicyclists and may arrest if the bicyclist does not comply.
  • Cyclists must obey instructions of official road signs including painted lane signs. For example, if there is a right turn only lane, a cyclist cannot use that lane to drive straight through the intersection.
  • Bicyclists must stop at all red lights, and can be ticketed for failing to do so.
  • Bicycles must be equipped with both front and rear lights commencing 30 minutes before sunset and until 30 minutes past sunrise.
  • Bicycles must be equipped with “a bell, horn or gong” (seriously!)
  • Slower moving traffic must stay to the right as far as is “practicable”. This does not mean as far as possible.
  • Cyclists must yield to pedestrians on sidewalks. (really, it’s a great idea to yield to pedestrians wherever they may be)

The NHCC applies CanBike safe cycling principles

CanBike safe cycling

There are a number of very dedicated safety advocates within the NHCC, many of whom have taken the CanBike Safety Instructor training curriculum, and some are certified instructors who can be consulted with any cycling safety. From time to time the NHCC delivers cycling safety courses that range from short clinics that cover the basics to fully comprehensive courses designed to improve your confidence while interacting with traffic and also your bike handling. NHCC safety instructors are enthusiastic about safety and are happy to share information or knowledge with you. Feel free to seek them out with your safety questions!

Rules of the Road: Hand Signals

Rules of the Road: Riding in Traffic

Safety: Bike Handling 101

Safety: Traffic Skills 101