AN ACT relative to cycling on the left side of the road.


SPONSORS: Rep. Avellani, Carr. 5


COMMITTEE: Transportation






This bill requires that bicycles travel on the left side of a two-way road where there are no existing bicycle lanes.


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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.






In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty One


AN ACT relative to cycling on the left side of the road


Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:


1  Rules of the Road; Application of Motor Vehicle Laws to Bicycles.  Amend RSA 265:143 to read as follows:

265:143 Application of Motor Vehicle Laws to Bicycles.  

I. Every person propelling a vehicle by human power or riding a bicycle shall have all of the rights and be subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of any other vehicle under the rules of the road, except as provided in [paragraph] paragraphs II and III and as to special regulations in this subdivision and except as to those provisions which by their nature can have no application.

II.(a) Any peace officer, wearing a distinctive uniform, operating a bicycle during the course of his or her duties is exempt from the provisions of this subdivision, except as those provisions relate to driving under the influence of alcoholic beverages or drugs, if the bicycle is being operated under any of the following circumstances:

(1) In response to an emergency call.

(2) While engaged in a rescue operation.

(3) In the immediate pursuit of an actual or suspected violator of the law.

(b) This paragraph shall not relieve a peace officer from the duty to operate a bicycle with due regard for the safety of all persons using the public way.

III.  Where no dedicated bicycle lane exists on a two-way roadway, every person riding a bicycle or electric bicycle shall do so on the left hand side of such roadway as far to the left as is safely possible, facing oncoming traffic, and shall ride single file when in a group.  When such a bicyclist approaches intersections, he or she shall come to a complete stop and look in all directions for oncoming traffic before proceeding through the intersection.  Bicyclists riding on the left hand side of the road shall be required to use hand signals pursuant to RSA 265:47.

2  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.