Is it Legal to Ride a Bike on the Sidewalk in Orange County, CA?

No state law prohibits bicyclists from riding bicycles on the sidewalk. Under California Vehicle Code Section 21206, state, county, or city governments have the authority to establish their own ordinances and rules. For the most part, biking on the sidewalk in Irvine, California is legal. All cyclists under the age of 18 must wear helmets at all times while biking in Orange County.

While no law requires cyclists over 18 to wear helmets, wearing helmets dramatically reduces the chances of suffering a fatal head injury in an accident. Cyclists should purchase properly sized helmets with a functional strap that goes under the chin to protect the most vulnerable parts of the head. It is also recommended to wear eye protection while cycling, which guards against dust, dirt and intense UV sunlight. In some areas of Irvine, designated bike paths may not be available.

As a cyclist, riding on the sidewalk reduces the risk of having a car accident than on the street, since there is a sidewalk and a few extra feet that separate your bike from cars that drive more than 50 miles per hour on Barranca Parkway. Orange County residents should be aware of the county's laws and regulations on cycling to avoid injuries and limit the possibility of liability for an accident. When a cyclist enters a bike path, Irvine's network of bike lanes isn't fully built or interconnected. This forces cyclists to drive through nine-lane Sand Canyon on Highway 405, or to take a detour along the highway path, which takes one or two miles in the wrong direction.

If your bicycle ride starts from home, you may have to travel a mile or two to get to the nearest bike path. The city of Irvine has a different set of rules for when a cyclist drives their bike on the road. Cyclists must ride with the flow of traffic, which means staying on the right at all times, except on one-way streets with left-facing bicycle lanes. Being familiar with local bicycle laws can not only help you avoid getting a ticket, but it can also reduce the risk of being hit by a car and needing an Orange County personal injury lawyer.

Riding bicycles on sidewalks is generally legal in Irvine, California. However, cyclists must adhere to local laws and regulations regarding helmet use and riding with traffic flow. Additionally, cyclists should be aware that Irvine's bike paths are not fully built or interconnected and may need to take detours or travel further distances to reach their destination.

Tania Bluitt
Tania Bluitt

Passionate organizer. Certified food fan. Hipster-friendly food advocate. Friendly beeraholic. Subtly charming pop culture fanatic.

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