Bicycle, Moped, and ATV Laws

Spring is here, warmer temperatures have arrived, and neighborhood children have resumed outdoor play. This is a good time to review some relevant Indiana Law’s dealing with requirements of Bicycles, Motorized Bicycles, and ATVs found in the Indiana Code 9-21-11 and 14-16.

Indiana Code 9-21-11: Bicycles & Motorized Bicycles

  • A bicycle can not be used to carry more persons at one time than the number for which the bicycle is designed and equipped.
  • A person upon a bicycle, a coaster, roller skates, or a toy vehicle may not attach the bicycle, coaster, roller skates, or toy vehicle or the person to a streetcar or vehicle upon a roadway.
  • A person who rides a bicycle may not carry a package, a bundle, or an article that prevents the person from keeping both hands upon the handlebars.
  • A person may not ride a bicycle unless the bicycle is equipped with a bell or other device capable of giving a signal audible for a distance of at least 100 feet. A bicycle may not be equipped with and a person may not use upon a bicycle a siren or whistle.
  • A bicycle operated on a highway from one-half hour after sunset until one-half hour before sunrise must be equipped with a lamp on the front exhibiting a white light visible from a distance of at least 500 feet to the front and a lamp on the rear exhibiting a red light visible from a distance of 500 feet to the rear or a red reflector visible from a distance of 500 feet to the rear.
  • A bicycle must be equipped with a brake that will enable the person who operates the bicycle to make the braked wheels skid on dry, level, clean pavement.

Indiana Code 9-21-11-12: Motorized bicycles (Mopeds); Prohibitions on Operation; Conditions

A motorized bicycle may not be operated under any of the following conditions:

  • By a person less than 15 years of age.
  • By a person who has not obtained an Identification Card (or driver’s license) from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
  • On an interstate highway or a sidewalk.
  • At a speed greater than 25 miles per hour.
  • A person less than 18 years of age who operates or rides a motorized bicycle on a street or highway shall wear protective headgear meeting minimum requirements established by the USDOT, and they shall wear protective glasses, goggles, or a transparent face shield.
  • Those who violate these statutes commit a Class C Infraction.

Indiana Code 14-16: Regulation of Land Recreation

  • ATVs and snowmobiles may not be operated on public property unless they are registered.
  • An individual may not operate a vehicle required to be registered upon a public highway, street, or rights-of-way thereof or on a public or private parking lot not specifically designed for the use of vehicles.
  • Read the Indiana Code 14-16-1-20 for exceptions to this statute.
  • An individual less that 14 years of age may not operate a vehicle without immediate supervision of an individual at least 18 years of age, except on land owned or under the control of the individual or the individual’s parent or legal guardian.
  • A vehicle may not be used to hunt, pursue, worry, or kill a wild bird or a domestic or wild animal.
  • A vehicle may not be operated between sunset and sunrise unless the vehicle has at least 1 headlight and 1 taillight.
  • A vehicle may not be operated at any time unless the vehicle has adequate brakes capable of producing deceleration at 14 feet per second on level ground at a speed of 20 miles per hour.
  • An individual shall not operate a vehicle at a rate of speed greater than is reasonable and proper having due regard for existing conditions or in a manner that unnecessarily endangers the person or property of another
  • An individual shall not operate a vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or illegal narcotics/habit forming depressants or stimulants.
  • An individual shall not operate a vehicle during the hours 30 minutes after sunset to 30 minutes before sunrise without displaying a lighted headlight and taillight.
  • An individual shall not operate a vehicle unless the vehicle is equipped with a muffler in good working order and in constant operation to prevent excessive or unusual noise and annoying smoke.
  • An individual shall not operate a vehicle within 100 feet of a dwelling between midnight and 6:00 AM except on the individual’s own property or property under the individual’s control or as an invited guest.
  • An individual shall not operate a vehicle on any property without consent of the landowner or tenant, on or across a cemetery or burial ground, or on a railroad track or railroad right-of-way.
  • A person who violates these statues commits a Class C Infraction or a Class B Misdemeanor. Read IC 14-16-1 for full statute text.