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What does California vehicle code 21200 mean for bikers?

The bicycle law in California begins with code 21200. It outlines the rights, responsibilities and rules for riding a bike on roadways in the state. Every rider should be aware of the laws pertaining to bicyclists.

It is essential to know where, when and how you can ride. It is also a good idea to learn special rules and requirements that can help to keep you safe. It all starts with the first part of the law, code 21200.

Basic rule

Code 21200 outlines the basic rule for all bicyclists. It explains that riding a bike on a roadway requires you to follow all the same laws that are applicable to driving a motor vehicle. You must follow the exact same rules, including stopping at all stop signs and lights, using turn signals, riding on the right side of the road and obeying all road signs. It also outlines that DUI laws apply to people on bicycles.

Law enforcement

Code 21200 also has a section about cops using bicycles on the job. It exempts them from all the typical laws, except those pertaining to a DUI, when responding to emergencies or other duties. But it also states they must operate the bike in a safe manner.


The bicycle laws in California run from code 21200 to 23336. This first code is essential to establish the rights of bicycles on the road. It makes it clear that despite the difference between bicycles and motor vehicles, the law treats them the same. It helps put everyone on the road in an equal space, thus making sure that everyone knows to share the road.

Code 21200 focuses on the operation of bicycles and clearly ensures all people on the roads respect and relate to bicycles in the same manner they would with another vehicle.