The Law and Cycling

Under the Ontario Highway Traffic Act, bicycles are considered vehicles.

  • Obey all traffic laws (stop signs and traffic lights)
  • Use hand signals for turning and stopping

What equipment do I require to ride my bicycle?

By law, all bicycles must have:

  • Reflective tape - white reflective tape on the front forks and red reflective tape on the rear forks
  • A bell or horn in good working order
  • Brakes - at least one working brake system on the rear wheel
  • Lights - a white front light and a red rear light or reflector if you ride between ½ hour before sunset and ½ hour after sunrise

Other components you should consider include:

  • Lock to secure your bike
  • Saddle bags/panniers to carry emergency repair equipment
  • Rear rack to carry bags and belongings
  • Fenders
  • Pant clip to keep clothing away from the chain and moving parts


In Ontario, every cyclist under the age of 18 must wear an approved bicycle helmet. If you are 18 or older you can make a choice to wear a helmet or not. When worn properly, bike helmets can reduce injuries.