North Carolina Laws Relating to Bicycling

Chapter 20 - Motor Vehicles

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Section 20-4.01. Definitions.

(49) Vehicle. -- Every device in, upon, or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, excepting devices moved by human power or used exclusively upon fixed rails or tracks; provided, that for the purposes of this Chapter bicycles shall be deemed vehicles and every rider of a bicycle upon a highway shall be subject to the provisions of this Chapter applicable to the driver of a vehicle except those which by their nature can have no application. This term shall not include a device which is designed for and intended to be used as a means of transportation for a person with a mobility impairment, is suitable for use both inside and outside a building, and whose maximum speed does not exceed 12 miles per hour when the device is being operated by a person with a mobility impairment.

Section 20-129. Required lighting equipment of vehicles.

(e) Lamps on Bicycles. -- Every bicycle shall be equipped with a lighted lamp on the front thereof, visible under normal atmospheric conditions from a distance of at least 300 feet in front of such bicycle, and shall also be equipped with a reflex mirror or lamp on the rear, exhibiting a red light visible under like conditions from a distance of at least 200 feet to the rear of such bicycle, when used at night.

Section 20-171. Traffic laws apply to persons riding animals or driving animal-drawn vehicles.

Every person riding an animal or driving any animal drawing a vehicle upon a highway shall be subject to the provisions of this Article applicable to the driver of a vehicle, except those provisions of the Article which by their nature can have no application. (1939, c. 275.)

PART 10A. Operation of Bicycles.

20-171.1. Definitions.
As used in this Part, except where the context clearly requires otherwise, the words and expressions defined in this section shall be held to have the meanings here given to them:
Bicycle. -- A nonmotorized vehicle with two or three wheels tandem, a steering handle, one or two saddle seats, and pedals by which the vehicle is propelled. (1977, c. 1123, s. 1.)
20-171.2. Bicycle racing.
(a) Bicycle racing on the highways is prohibited except as authorized in this section.
(b) Bicycle racing on a highway shall not be unlawful when a racing event has been approved by State or local authorities on any highway under their respective jurisdictions. Approval of bicycle highway racing events shall be granted only under conditions which assure reasonable safety for all race participants, spectators and other highway users, and which prevent unreasonable interference with traffic flow which would seriously inconvenience other highway users.
(c) By agreement with the approving authority, participants in an approved bicycle highway racing event may be exempted from compliance with any traffic laws otherwise applicable thereto, provided that traffic control is adequate to assure the safety of all highway users. (1977, c. 1123, s. 1.)

20-173. Pedestrians' right-of-way at crosswalks.

(c) The driver of a vehicle emerging from or entering an alley, building entrance, private road, or driveway shall yield the right-of- way to any pedestrian, or person riding a bicycle, approaching on any sidewalk or walkway extending across such alley, building entrance, road, or driveway. (1937, c. 407, s. 134; 1973, c. 1330, s. 32.)

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