I’ve just read through a few of the law-realated topic for Runicycling, and i wanted to know if anyone has any information about the Laws in Australia? I’m in Melbourne so any Victorain realated laws are what im specifically looking for, but any other state laws (if it falls under this category) would be a great refrance point too, Even laws that i can use as examples that distinguish B*kes from Runicycles that are in use in other countries would be helpful too, if I’m going to need to fix the current laws…
I’ve been pulled up for riding down a no-through-road without a helmet and riding on the road by bke cops. They explained vagely that anything human driven with pedals is classified as a bke, but:
they were b*ke cops, and
they were b*ke cops.
Well mebbe its technially one point, but i’ve had no trouble before when riding down very vacant streets when the footpath it just horrible (In the case when i was pulled up. Not that i can’t handle it, just my tire was bald ) before, where cops have been cruising the neiborhood. Nor have i had trouble with riding on the footpath, but it’s all condradiction to me. Your not allowed to ride on the footpath if your a b*ke, but its just plain dangerous to mix Runicycles with traffic, even my friend who has a 30 inch and is planning to make a Runi out of a penny fathing wheel agrees.
If it wasn’t a Bke cop mebbe i wouldn’t be so inquisitive but i just want to clear things up, all the other police i’ve talked to have all distinguished the gap between Bke and Runicycle.
Anyhoo, if this makes any sence it’s a miracle,
I’m not sure whether I’ve just gotten lucky or what, but I live next to a police station and am constantly riding my unicycle outside on the pavement without a helmet, I’ve definately noted them seeing me lots of times but they’ve never once commented on it?
bicycle means a vehicle with 1 or more wheels that is built to be propelled by human
power through a belt, chain or gears (whether or not it has an auxiliary motor), and—
(a) includes a pedicab, penny-farthing, scooter, tricycle and unicycle; but
(b) does not include a wheelchair, wheeled recreational device, wheeled
toy, or any vehicle with an auxiliary motor capable of generating a
power output over 200 watts (whether or not the motor is operating).
Note Vehicle is defined in rule 15, and wheelchair, wheeled recreational device and
wheeled toy are defined in this dictionary.
In NSW, Unicycles are regarded as Toy vehicles - in the same league as skateboards and rollerblades.
You cannot ride them on a footpath, and must ride them on a road, with a helmet (just like skating).
I have been pulled up for this many a time (riding on footpath with no helmet).
Also, an interesting side note, we cant ride unicycles around at night, even with lights - no ‘toy vehicle’ can be used at night, lights or no lights.
Ive been pulled up maybe 5 times since I started riding - some for not wearing a helmet, one for riding on the path and not wearing a helmet, one for riding around on footpaths at night (without a helmet, god forbid)…Never been charged/arrested/anything other than a non offical warning.
I think the fact that they were bike cops is irrelevant.
anyhow, be cool, don’t annoy the police, just be polite. try to see things from their perspective (for example, if im riding on a busy footpath with no helmet and weaving my way through pedestrians, they would fear that I would fall off and hurt someone - in a normal persons eyes I think unicyclists are always ‘about to fall off’ - we cant suspend gravity forever, you know…and i understand their fear…no amount of me telling them what a skilled rider i am is going to change that)…
And besides - it could be worse - you coulda been beaten down rodney king style.
Dont carp on about supposed discrimination from bike cops because you were riding your uni where you shouldnt have been under the law…there was no discrimination.
have fun and keep riding!
-your friendly solicitor/unicyclist
ahh! notes down “don’t ride at police with 2 by 4” . On a more serious note (i have to ruin all my fun…), thanks for the info about the Vicroads stuff, i can’t belive that they classified Runicycles as bikes…
Well i guess i know where i stand now (mumble mumble…)
Cheers with the help, and may laid-back-champion-police be with you,
I live in sydney and have been given official warnings by police. According to the police I spoke to a unicylce falls under the classification of a bicycle, the toy point is interesting though and if true could change things significantly.
Me and my friends were pulled up twice by the same police unit, the first time we were told very vaugely not to ride. We respected this warning for about 10 minutes then got real bored and continued to ride.
We were then passed by the same cops heading the other direction, this time they made it clear that we had to ride on the road and wear helmets, also a bell and brake are supposedly requirted on a “bike”.
I left a while after this, but my friend freakily met the same cop much further on and were told they were being ticketed!!! Their names were taken but no tickets recieved.
Id love to hear a qoutation of the law exactly regarding this. A unicycle should NOT be under bike law due to the serious difference made by the lack of free wheeling. This is a BIG difference from a saftey point of view. Anyways…hope someone can find us the law on this.
I should also mention that many many times Ive ridden past police and had very positive comments ranging from “cool” to “give us a demo” (from 4 police in redfern of all places). I think in practical terms it comes down to the individual cops. Just be nice and try to make them see that your just having good safe fun. If you smile and seem overall respectful and co-operative they will more than likely see the somewhat comical side of the whole thing and leave you be.
There are some ‘good’ bike cops out there. On the annual ‘ride to work’ day in Melbourne I’ve often had bike cops want to have a go - even had one who could sort of ride and was happy to show me (on the steps of Parliament House as well!!)
Seems to be an attitude thing - if you don’t give them an obvious excuse they seem pretty happy to live and let live.