Hendersonville Bikeway

Bike 'n Walk

Traffic Laws as they apply to bicycle use is not well understood by the general public, by city and state officials, or even by some officers entrusted to enforce those laws 

State Bicycle Laws

Bicycle is a vehicle and, as such, the bicyclist has all the rights and responsibilities of other vehicles on the road.

Bikes belong on the road, the road shoulder, or multi-use paths.

Sidewalks are intended for the use of pedestrians. Hendersonville does not outlaw bicycle use of sidewalks Generally, bicyles are not permitting on sidewalks in commercial districts

Nevertheless, bicyclists may want to consider using sidewalks where motor traffic is heavy and dangerous and few pedestrians are present. 

Tennessee Traffic Law for Bicycles

The first step for every bicyclist is to
learn and obey the laws

Tennessee Traffic Laws Relating to Bicycles


Most State and Municipal Codes for bicycle use are based on the Federal Uniform Vehicle Code

- Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices


  • Pedestrians have the right-of-way
  • Some States (e.g. Ohio) require bicyclists have/use bells to announce themselves.
  • When pedestrians are present
    - Anticipate unpredictable behavior
    - Keep speeds under 15-mph. 
Multi-use Trail Laws


  • Travel in the same direction as motor traffic
    - Law officers should ticket bicycles who violate this law. It a major cause for accidents.
  • Obey traffic control,
    -Stop at Stop lights. (TN allows bicycles to go thru Red Lights under under some circumstances.
    -No passing on the right
    -Move to the left near the center when turning left. 
  • Not travel more than two-abreast on a road.
    -In National parks they must travel single file.
  • Not impede traffic.
    - Must leave the road when impeding more than four other vehicles. 
  • Have lights in low light conditions
    - Both front and rear that can readily be seen by other road users.
  • Use roads in a predictable and non-hazardous fashion.
    - Law officers, based on his judgement, may ticket or arrest a bicyclist who is
    operating his vehicle in a reckless and danderous fashion.


Although the laws cited in the video were developed for Boise, Idaho, they apply to Tennessee

3-Foot Law


Law enforcement officers often lack knowledge of the law as it applies to bicyclists.

If a bicyclist is in a situation where the officer does not know the law,
s/he should obey the officer and take the matter up with the Chief of Police.

Click here A Law Officers Guide to Bicycle Safety -- Reference Guide Bicycle Law Enforcement,

Click here for article in Law and Order Magazine, July 2013

The laws listed on this page are just a brief summary of those that bicyclists most frequently experience. For a complete list of bicycle laws, including Dog Laws, Harashment, and Aggressive Drivers check the FOGBEE blog at http://fogbees.blogspot.com/ 

HBPC Plans/Reviews
-North-Central Hville-Feb
-Saundersville CMAQ-Dec 16 
-Greenway Safety Review-Jan 17  
-Project "TO DO" List  
-Facebook Page

Hendersonville Department Directors
- Planning: Keith Free kfree@hvilletn.org
- Public Works: Chip Moore jmoore@hville.org
- Parks: Brandon Rogers brogers@hvilletn.org.