Skip to main content

Bicycle Laws in Louisiana: Lights & Reflectors

An Exploration of State and Local Laws Concerning Bicycles and Their Use

Lights & Reflectors are required by state law

RS 32:329.1     

§329.1.  Bicycles; front lamps; rear lamps; side and rear reflectors

A.  Any bicycle when in use at the times specified in R.S. 32:301 shall be equipped with the following:

(1)  A lamp mounted on the front that shall emit a white light visible from a distance of at least five hundred feet to the front.  A generator-powered lamp that emits light only when the bicycle is moving may be used to meet this requirement.

(2)  A lamp mounted on the rear that shall emit either a flashing or steady red light visible from a distance of five hundred feet to the rear.

(3)  A red reflector mounted on the rear and a reflector on each side facing outward at a right angle to the bicycle frame that shall be visible from all distances from one hundred feet to six hundred feet to the rear when directly in front of lawful lower beams of head lamps on a motor vehicle.

B.  A bicycle or its operator may be equipped with lights or reflectors in addition to those required by Subsection A of this Section, except that red lamps and red reflectors shall not be used on the front of the bicycle and white lamps and white reflectors shall not be used on the rear of the bicycle.

C.  A lamp or lamps worn by the operator of a bicycle shall comply with the requirements of Subsection A of this Section, if the lamp or lamps can be seen at the distances specified.

D.  No person shall operate any bicycle on a state highway, parish road, or city street at a time specified in R.S. 32:301 unless such bicycle is equipped with lamps and reflectors to comply with Subsection A of this Section.  Whoever violates this Section shall be subject to a fine of not more than twenty-five dollars which shall include all costs of court.

E.  No retailer, distributor, wholesaler, or manufacturer in this state shall sell or offer for sale any bicycle unless such bicycle is equipped with lamps and reflectors as required by Subsection A of this Section.

F.  This Section shall not apply to operators of bicycles or bicycles while the operator or bicycle is engaged in sanctioned competition races or to bicycles while utilized by peace officers in furtherance of their official duties.

Acts 2011, No. 98, §1; Acts 2011, No. 244, §1.

Your Local Parish

Be sure to check Municode to see what your local parish specifies. This ordinance is from New Orleans:

Sec. 154-1422. - Necessary bicycle equipment.

(b) No person shall operate a bicycle unless it is equipped with a bell or other device capable of giving a signal audible for a distance of at least 100 feet, except that a bicycle shall not be equipped with nor shall any person use upon a bicycle any siren or whistle.

(c) Every bicycle shall be equipped with a brake which will enable the operator to make the braked wheels skid on dry, level, clean pavement.

(Code 1956, § 38-211)

State Law reference— Similar provisions, R.S. 32:329.

This from East Baton Rouge Parish:

Sec. 11:231. - Lamps and other equipment on bicycles.

(b) Every bicycle shall be equipped with a brake which will enable the operator to make the braked wheel skid on dry, level, clean pavement.

(City Code 1951, Title 11, § 231)

State Law reference— Similar provisions, R.S. 32:329.