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When riding a motorcycle or scooter on our roads, it is important to share the roads with other users, including pedestrians, bicycles and motorised vehicles. Market research shows that 5% of RACV members have a motorcycle or scooter in their household.
For more information on the road rules that apply to drivers travelling near motorcycle riders, see the section below on Sharing The Road.
The following is a summary of the additional rules that apply to motorcycle riders riding on roads:
Motorbike riders and their passengers must wear an approved helmet. For more information on approved helmets visit VicRoads website.
A motorbike rider does not have to wear their approved helmet if the engine is off and the bike is stationary (but not parked) or they are pushing it. Not wearing a helmet has to be safe in the circumstances. This change enables riders to move their bikes, with the engine off, without wearing their helmet.
For more information see the Victorian Road Safety Road Rules rule 270.
The rules relating to motorcycle lane filtering will change from 2 November 2015. Lane filtering is the practice of motorcycles and scooters travelling at low speed through stopped or slow moving traffic, for example at traffic lights.
VicRoads have advised that the change will permit filtering:
between lanes or lines of traffic in the same direction
between lanes or lines of traffic and parked cars
for motorcycle licence holders (not learner permit holders)
at speeds up to 30km/h (penalties will apply for filtering in excess of 30km/h)
if ‘safe to do so’
on roads with two or more lanes or lines of traffic travelling in the same direction, unless signed otherwise.
For more information see the Victorian Road Safety Road Rules rule 151A.
Lane splitting, the practice of motorcycle riders travelling at high speed between moving traffic, is not legal in Victoria.
Miniature motorcycles or monkey bikes do not meet the standards required to be registered as a vehicle. Therefore they cannot be used on public roads, footpaths or nature strips.
Footpath parking of motorcycles is legal in Victoria, unless specifically prohibited by signs at a location. We have more information available on motorcycle parking on footpaths.
For more information see the Victorian Road Safety Road Rules rule 197.
Pets and animals
The rider of a motorbike must not ride with an animal on the motor bike between the rider and the handlebars, or in another position that interferes with the rider's ability to control the motorbike or to have a clear view of the road with an exception for farmers travelling short distances of up to 500 metres. RACV has more information about travelling with your pet.
For more information see the Victorian Road Safety Road Rules rule 297.
Riding with other motorcycles
Motorbike riders are allowed to ride up to two abreast, and up to 1.5 metres apart. Another rider may pass if overtaking. For more information see the Victorian Road Safety Road Rules rule 151.
A motorbike rider can ride in transit lanes, regardless of the number of people on the bike. They may not however use other lanes such as bicycle or bus lanes, unless signs indicate otherwise, or allowed by other rules (e.g. travelling in a bus lane to turn at an intersection). For more information on the distances a driver or rider may travel in a lane see Special Purpose Lanes. For more information see the Victorian Road Safety Road Rules rule 156.
Motorcycle and bicycle riders also need to be aware of other vehicles and in particular watch for any vehicles making turning manoeuvres.
Motorcycle riders can improve their safety by wearing protective clothing. Riders can also improve their visibility by wearing light or reflective clothing or vests.