City of West Haven, CT
New Haven County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of West Haven 8-28-2017. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Vehicles and traffic — See Ch. 219.

§ 80-1 Applicability of traffic laws.

A. 
Every person riding a bicycle upon a street shall be granted all of the rights and shall be subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle. Every person riding a bicycle upon a sidewalk shall be granted all of the rights and shall be subject to all of the duties applicable to a pedestrian.
B. 
The provisions of this Traffic Code shall apply to bicycles, except those provisions which, by their nature, are not applicable.
C. 
A violation of any traffic law by an operator of a bicycle shall be ticketed using the same procedure as is used for motor vehicle infractions, except that any violation committed while operating a bicycle shall not affect the status of the violator's motor vehicle operator's license. When a citation is issued to a bicycle operator, the fact that the violation involves a bicycle shall be clearly indicated on the citation.
D. 
Whenever there is a violation of traffic law by a bicycle operator or a violation by a motorist that endangers a bicycle operator, the court may permit demonstration of successful completion of a court-approved cycling knowledge course or test in lieu of or in addition to a fine or other penalty.

§ 80-2 Riding upon seats; number of riders; carrying packages.

A. 
A person operating a bicycle or motorcycle shall not ride other than upon or astride the permanent and regular seat attached thereto, nor carry any other person upon such bicycle or motorcycle other than upon a firmly attached and regular seat thereon, nor shall any person ride upon a bicycle or motorcycle other than upon such a firmly attached and regular seat.
B. 
No bicycle shall be used to carry more persons at one time than the number for which it is designed and equipped.
C. 
The provisions of Subsections A and B above shall not prohibit the carrying of a child in a seat or trailer designed for carrying children and firmly attached to the bicycle.
D. 
No person operating a bicycle shall carry any package, bundle or article that prevents the driver from keeping at least one hand upon the handlebars.

§ 80-3 Attaching bicycle or sled to vehicle.

A. 
No person riding upon any motorcycle, bicycle, coaster, roller skates, sled or toy vehicle shall attach the same or himself to any vehicle upon a roadway.
B. 
No operator shall knowingly permit any person riding upon any motorcycle, bicycle, coaster, roller skates, sled or toy vehicle to attach the same or himself to any vehicle while it is moving upon a roadway. This section does not apply to the towing of a disabled vehicle nor to the towing of a trailer designed for this purpose.

§ 80-4 Riding abreast.

Persons riding bicycles upon a roadway shall ride not more than two abreast in a single lane, except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles.

§ 80-5 Use of sirens or whistles.

A bicycle shall not be equipped with nor shall any person use upon a bicycle any siren or whistle.

§ 80-6 Brakes.

Every bicycle shall be equipped with an adequate brake when used on a street or highway.

§ 80-7 Operation on roadways.

A. 
Every person operating a bicycle upon a roadway shall ride as near to the right side of the roadway as practicable, obeying all traffic rules applicable to vehicles and exercising due care when passing a standing vehicle or one proceeding in the same direction.
B. 
This section does not require a person operating a bicycle to ride at the edge of the roadway when it is unreasonable or unsafe to do so. Conditions that may require riding away from the edge of the roadway include when necessary to avoid fixed or moving objects, parked or moving vehicles, surface hazards, or if it is otherwise unsafe or impracticable to do so, including if the lane is too narrow for the bicycle and an overtaking vehicle to travel safely side by side within the lane.
C. 
When a bicycle is operated on the roadway, the operator shall give hand signals to other vehicle operators in the vicinity before turning or changing lanes. Such signals shall conform with the motor vehicle laws of Connecticut. The signal shall be made not less than one time but is not required to be continuous. A bicycle operator is not required to make a signal if the bicycle is in a designated turn lane, and a signal shall not be given when the operator's hands are needed for the safe operation of the bicycle.

§ 80-8 Reckless operation; control; weaving.

No person shall operate a bicycle:
A. 
Without due regard for the safety and rights of pedestrians and drivers and occupants of all other vehicles, and so as to endanger the life, limb or property of any person while in the lawful use of the streets or sidewalks or any other public or private property;
B. 
Without exercising reasonable and ordinary control over such bicycle;
C. 
By trick-riding or in a weaving or zigzag course, unless such irregular course is necessary for safe operation in compliance with law.

§ 80-9 Compliance with traffic signal control devices.

A. 
Any person operating a bicycle shall obey the instructions of official traffic signals, signs and other control devices applicable to vehicles, unless otherwise directed by a police officer.
B. 
Whenever authorized signs are erected that no right or left or U-turns are permitted, no person operating a bicycle shall disobey the direction of any such sign, except where such person dismounts from the bicycle to make any such turn, in which event such person shall then obey the regulations applicable to pedestrians.

§ 80-10 Riding on sidewalks.

A. 
Except as provided in Subsection B below, it shall be legal to operate a bicycle upon a sidewalk when sidewalks are available and not congested with pedestrian traffic. If the sidewalk is congested with pedestrian traffic, any bicycle operator using the sidewalk shall walk the bicycle.
B. 
No person shall ride a bicycle upon a sidewalk in a business district or upon or along which signs have been erected by authority of the Chief of Police prohibiting such bicycle riding.
C. 
A person propelling a bicycle upon and along a sidewalk, or across a roadway upon and along a crosswalk, shall yield the right of way to any pedestrian and shall give audible signal before overtaking and passing such pedestrian. This audible signal may be given by the voice or by a bell or other warning device capable of giving an audible signal and shall be given at such a distance and in such a manner as not to startle a person or persons being overtaken and passed.
D. 
A person operating a bicycle upon a sidewalk, before overtaking and passing a blind person carrying a white cane or guided by a dog, shall dismount and overtake or pass on foot, if necessary for safety.
E. 
A person shall not operate a bicycle from a sidewalk so as to suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and move into the path of a vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.
F. 
No person shall operate a bicycle on a sidewalk at a speed greater than an ordinary walk when approaching or entering a crosswalk or approaching or crossing a driveway if a vehicle is approaching the crosswalk or driveway. This subsection does not require reduced speeds for bicycles when other vehicles are not present.

§ 80-11 Emerging from alley or driveway.

The operator of a bicycle emerging from an alley, driveway or building shall, upon approaching a sidewalk or the sidewalk area extending across any alley or driveway, yield the right of way to all pedestrians approaching on such sidewalk area and, upon entering the street, shall yield the right of way to all vehicles approaching on said street.

§ 80-12 Parking.

A. 
No person shall park a bicycle upon a sidewalk in such a manner so as to unduly interfere with pedestrian traffic, or upon a roadway so as to unduly interfere with vehicular traffic.
B. 
Bicycles shall be parked in such a manner as not to interfere with building entrances.

§ 80-13 Impounding; storage charges.

Whenever any minor under the age of 18 years operates a bicycle or motorized bicycle in violation of any section of this Code, the bicycle may be seized by any member of the Police Department and impounded. A bicycle or motorized bicycle so impounded shall be surrendered to the owner or, if the owner is a minor, to the parents or guardians of such minor. A full explanation of the reason for the impounding shall be made to the owner, parent or guardian. A complete record of each such impounding shall be kept in the office of the Chief of Police. There shall be a storage charge of $25 per day for each impounded bicycle or motorized bicycle. The impounded bicycle or motorized bicycle shall not be released until said storage charge is paid. If the bicycle or motorized bicycle is not claimed within 30 days of it being impounded, the bicycle or motorized bicycle shall be considered as abandoned and shall be deemed to be the property of the City of West Haven.

§ 80-14 Penalties for offenses.

Whoever violates any provision of this chapter shall be charged an administrative penalty of $100.