Utah Law

There aren’t very many laws specific to bicycles, but the laws that are there are very important and worth reading. Excellent summaries of the current laws have already been created. Links to a few of these are included below.

Utah State Laws

  • BikeLeague.org has a collection of Utah laws that are commonly relevant to bicyclists. For drivers, the “Distracted Driving Laws” are particularly noteworthy (§41-6a-1715, §41-6a-1716, and §76-5-207.5. Utah legislature is working to make fatalities by any form of distraction severely punishable. Also note that since that site was last updated, laws were changed so that bicyclists may proceed through a red light as described in §41-6a-305 Part 7. This is intended for times of low traffic when traffic control sensors fail to detect a cyclist or motorcyclist to change the traffic light.
  • BikeUtah.org puts most of Utah’s state bicycling laws into plain english with hyperlinks to the laws in the state legislature website.
  • Road Respect has also made a compilation of laws relevant to cyclists. They also produce credit card sized pamphlets with the laws listed. Mad Dog Cycles usually keeps some on hand.
  • le.utah.gov is where you will find the official state laws. Below are many of the bicycle related laws condensed. Click on the links for the official wording.
    • §41-6a-701 Motorists may cross the center of the roadway to pass a bicyclist travelling at less than the reasonable speed of traffic if it is safe to do so. Some unsafe conditions include approaching a hill, bridge, or tunnel where visibility is obstructed or when approaching an intersection.
    • §41-6a-705 Bicyclists may pass on the right in their own lane (a bike lane or an empty traffic lane). Bicyclists may leave the roadway to pass on the right.
    • §41-6a-706.5 Motorists cannot drive within three feet of a bicyclist, distract the bicyclist with harmful intent, or force a bicyclist off the road.
    • §41-6a-708 Motorists may pass in no passing zones within the constraints of §41-6a-701.
    • §41-6a-804 All vehicles must signal before changing directions or stopping. To signal a left turn, extend the left arm horizontally. To signal a right turn, raise the left arm, or extend the left arm. To signal slowing or stopping, lower the left arm.
    • §41-6a-1102 Bicyclists must follow all the same laws as cars except for laws specific to bicyclists.
    • §41-6a-1103 Bicycles can only hold as many people as it was designed or equipped for.
    • §41-6a-1104 Bicyclists cannot be pulled by a moving vehicle.
    • §41-6a-1105 Ride as far to the right of the road as practicable except for avoiding right turn lanes to go straight, to turn left in the left turn lane, to avoid hazards, or when in places where it is narrow and unsafe for cars to pass. Do not ride more than two abreast, and do not impede traffic. You may be required to use a path instead of the roadway where indicated. Ride in the same direction as traffic.
    • §41-6a-1106 Pedestrians have right of way over bicyclists. Warn pedestrians before passing. Follow signs. Don’t ride in a negligent manner. Travel at reasonable speeds on sidewalks. Follow all pedestrian rules when riding on the sidewalk.
    • §41-6a-1107 Bicycles can park on the sidewalk unless signs prohibit it. Parked bicycles may not impede pedestrian or other traffic. Bicycles can park in the road where parking is allowed.
    • §41-6a-1108 Bicycles can turn left in the left turn lane the same as cars, or they can choose a route similar to pedestrians at crosswalks by crossing the intersection and waiting at the corner to proceed in the new direction. This does not mean a bicyclist may ride in the crosswalk, but in a route similar to that of a pedestrian.
    • §41-6a-1109 Exceptions to required turn signals are that bicyclists to not need to signal continuously and bicyclists do not need to signal in right turn only or left turn only lanes.
    • §41-6a-1110 Police officers may stop and inspect a bicycle if they have reason to believe it is unsafe, illegal, or in bad repair.
    • §41-6a-1111 Bicycle races are prohibited on the road except when given proper approval.
    • §41-6a-1112 Bicyclists must keep at least one hand on the handlebars at all times.
    • §41-6a-1112 Sirens or whistles are prohibited. Brakes capable of stopping within 25 feet from 10 mph on dry flat pavement are required.
    • §41-6a-1113 When riding in the dark, required lights/reflectors are: a white headlight (not just a reflector), a red rear light and/or reflector, and side lights and/or reflectors visible from both sides.
    • §76-6-408 “A person commits theft if he receives, retains, or disposes of the property of another knowing that it has been stolen, or believing that it probably has been stolen, or who conceals, sells, withholds or aids in concealing, selling, or withholding the property from the owner, knowing the property to be stolen, intending to deprive the owner of it.” Duties of pawnbrokers and other details.
    • §76-6-412 A stolen bicycle (or any stolen property) is a second degree felony if it is worth more than $5,000. It is a third degree felony if it is between $1,500 and $5,000 or if the thief has stolen or attempted to steal twice before in the last ten years. It is also a third degree felony if the thief has stolen once before and the value of the bicycle is between $500 and $1,500. It is a class A misdemeanor if the bicycle is between $500 and $1,500. It is a class B misdemeanor if the bicycle is less than $500. “The thief is liable for three times the amount of the damages sustained by the plaintiff, and for costs of suit and reasonable attorney fees.”
    • §76-3-203, §76-3-204, and §76-3-301 A second degree felony is 1-15 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine. A third degree felony is up to 5 years in prison and up to a $5,000 fine. A class A misdemeanor is up to one year in jail and up to $2,500 fine. A class B misdemeanor is up to six months in jail and up to a $1,000 fine.

Provo City Ordinances

BikeProvo.org lists many of the city ordinances along with many of the state laws. A few include registering your bicycle with Provo City, and to not ride a bicycle on a sidewalk by Center Street between 100 E and 500 W, or anywhere a sign is posted.