I’m doing a ride soon in Australia. A friend told me that unicycling on roads in Western Australia is illegal. Any Western Australian riders out there that have any info?
Sid unlike Victoria where unicycles are classed as bicycles, in West Aust they appear to be classed as a ‘wheeled recreational device’ (bundled in with scooters, skateboards roller blades etc)
“wheeled recreational device” means a wheeled device, built to transport a person,
propelled by human power or gravity, and ordinarily used for recreation
or play —
(a) including —
(i) in-line skates, rollerskates, a skateboard or similar wheeled
(ii) a scooter being used by a person aged 12 years of age or
(iii) a unicycle,
4.2 Wheeled Recreational Devices (WRDs)
“People using WRDs (skates, skateboards, scooters etc) are a category of pedestrian
and in most regards they are required to obey the same laws as pedestrians. While
some of the special provisions that relate to WRDs are mentioned in the above, there
are several other important regulations that relate to their use. For instance regulation
206 prohibits travel by WRDs on carriageways that have dividing lines or lane lines,
or those that have median strips. They are also not permitted to travel on
carriageways where the speed limit is higher than 50km/h. In essence they are
restricted to local streets. Regulation 207 also requires that they keep left on
carriageways and travel in single file, while regulation 210 prohibits WRD riders from
being drawn by vehicles or travelling close to the rear of vehicles.”
I’m also planning a uni ride across from WA, if not this year then next. I don’t think the West Aust regulations will be an issue in practice tbh.
Doh, forum so slow, double post.
Thanks , Pete.
I did read that but was hoping they wouldn’t enforce it. Just wondering if its illegeal in SA too. I know unicyclists have ridden on the highways in Tas, Vic, SA, ACT, NSW…so if its illegal in any of these states, then I can kinda confirm that the cops will turn a blind eye, hopefully
When is your ride? Crossing the Nullarbor?
P.S.- PM sent.
Sid, isn’t it like a little too late to worry given you’re SUPPOSED TO SET OFF SOON?
Oh yea forgot to add. Join us for APUC in Hong Kong in Aug!
Yeah, a bit too late. Just got an email from a friend that had me stressed for a bit
What are the dates? Not sure if I can take the leave but keep me in the loop.
As with most legal situations involving unicycles, the enforcement authorities won’t know what the law says. That means your job is to make sure they don’t have a reason to go look it up. Be smart about where and how you ride, make friends along the way, and be respectful to any cops you see.
Just delet it next time.
If you treat cops with respect they will generally do the same to you, even if you are doing an “illegal” activity. They sometimes will even turn a blind eye to your “illegal” activity. Lets just face it some of our laws are just plain dumb.
Cool to see your big adventure is all coming together. From my experience you should have no problem on the roads in SA or Victoria. I got good responses from all the police i came across on my trip last year. I think the key is just to look like you’ve got your shit together- ie: be wearing some hi vis gear, all the appropriate safety gear, have reflectors, a brake (even if it is just for show) and they will treat you no differently from a touring bicyclist (well, maybe with a bit more curiosity).
As far as I know the AUS (Australian Unicycling Society) lobbied for the rule change to include unicycles in the WRD category some time ago, so I’m pretty sure it is true across the board and not just in WA (though I haven’t checked).
On the tassie tour Tony tied a toy unicycle (or wheel, can’t remember) under his seat so that he was ‘technically’ a bike
rollot don’t you mean to be not included in the WRD category and be regarded by law as a bicycle? as in Victoria:
Actually, no, there were some people who wanted to be able to ride on the sidewalk on a 20" without any problems, so they lobbied to have the rule changed and include unicycles in the WRD category. The process took a number of years from what I’m told.
At UniNats there was some discussion on the matter, people who ride smaller wheels want to ride on the sidewalk and distance riders want to ride on the road, the problem is how do we differentiate the two in a way that makes sense to lawmakers. In the end I think we agreed that making different rules for different wheel sizes would never fly since the police would not be able to easily tell the difference between a road unicycle and a ‘sidewalk’ one.
IMO I think it would be simpler to have us categorized as one thing everywhere so there was no confusion; I’d much prefer to be labeled as a bke and just like some bkers ride on the sidewalk, so too could some unicyclers.
Either way, Sid, I wouldn’t be too concerned about it, I highly doubt that the average police officer would know the exact wording of the law.
Just did a quick search, in NSW a unicycle is classified as a WRD, same as in WA.
Link: (it is in the ‘dictionary’, near the bottom, search for unicycle)
From the article:
"wheeled recreational device means a wheeled device, built to transport a person, propelled by human power or gravity, and ordinarily used for recreation or play, and:
(a) includes rollerblades, rollerskates, a skateboard, scooter, unicycle or similar wheeled device, but (b) does not include a golf buggy, pram, stroller or trolley, a motor-assisted device (whether or not the motor is operating), or a bicycle, wheelchair or wheeled toy."
This is the sort of thing that I’d hate to happen in Singapore where we’ve been sort of out of the radar. For now.
Good luck with that Sid.
THe dates for HK are from 21-23 Aug. How does that fly with you?
Just don’t forget your helmet, even if you’re just popping out to the beer shop or whatever (or make sure you sound a bit stupid and foreign if you get caught riding without one like I did!).
If in doubt plead pom.
I wouldn’t pass off as a Pom. But I do have an (non-Aussie) accent and am brown. I can always play the race card
It looks likes things might be ok, as Mark said…look like I have my shit together.
The dates for APUC sound ok though I may be tad tired from all the unicycling I’ll see.
ok thanks, I wasn’t aware of that.
Yes me too, I think that approach makes more sense vs being in the WRD category.