What Is The Law In Spain On Wearing Helmets On Bicyles?

In Spain cyclists have to wear a helmet outside urban areas but are exempt during periods of excessive heat, on steep hills or if they are professional cyclists. Helmets are mandatory for all children under 16 years. This covers them if they are riding or if they are a passenger. And remember that it is prohibited:

  1. To two people in a trailer.
  2. To ride on a motorway.
  3. To ride using headphones, ear phones or a mobile phone.
  4. To ride a bicycle with an alcohol level over 0. 25mg of alcohol per litre of exhaled air.

Can you ride a bike without a helmet in Spain?

Bicycle Helmet Laws In Spain The current law which was updated in May 2014, states that cyclists under the age of 16 are obliged to wear a helmet at all times, whether cycling in urban or non-urban areas.

Is there a helmet law in Spain?

Spain’s national traffic authority is planning to make cycle helmets compulsory according to the bicycle advocacy group ConBici, which says that the proposal is one of a range of measures “that seem designed to push cyclists off the streets. ” Other proposals highlighted by ConBici include cyclists having to stay on the right-hand side of the carriageway, banning children from riding on the road unless accompanied by an adult, and the introduction of a system of fines that it says presupposes that “cyclists represent the same danger as motor vehicles.

” The cycling campaign group says that it received confirmation of the intention to make helmets mandatory from Francisco de las Alas-Pumariño, chief of statutory regulations at the Dirección General de Tráfico, Spain’s national traffic authority, who was one of the people responsible for drafting the proposals.

ConBici representatives were informed of the proposed measures while attending a road safety conference in Salamanca, and were told that they will be officially announced later this month once scrutinised by Spain’s ministry of the interior. It adds that other than a few pages, cycling groups have not had an opportunity to look at the proposed text of the changes to the regulations.

In common with its counterparts in other countries, the campaign group is opposed to compulsory helmets for a number of reasons, which it says “is a deterrent to cycling, and gives the false message that cycling is a dangerous activity.

“The national traffic authority has not presented any arguments or studies demonstrating the need for compulsory helmets – unlike ConBici which has presented convincing arguments against compulsory helmets. ” Currently, under a law implemented in 2004 but reportedly seldom enforced, cyclists in Spain have to wear helmets while riding in non-urban areas unless the weather is too hot or they are going uphill.

A law that required all cyclists to wear a helmet at all times would presumably be more strictly enforced. It points out that making helmets obligatory for all cyclists will reinforce the mistaken perception that cycling is more dangerous than it actually is, as well as damaging municipal bike rental schemes found in cities such as Barcelona.

While it is the issue of compulsory helmets that is most likely to grab the headlines, other proposed measures are likely to set alarm bells ringing not just in Spain, but elsewhere. One of those is the requirement for cyclists to “preferably” stay to the right of the carriageway, which ConBici believes would mean “that in the event of an accident and a subsequent court case, the cyclist must demonstrate his or her reasons for not being on the right of the lane – even if the motorist is at fault.

” It adds: “The bicycle will once again be considered a road obstacle, and the law will limit the amount of space that a bicycle can occupy on the road. Our proposed amendment to the law is the opposite: ‘Cyclists will preferably occupy the centre of the lane and when a motor vehicle approaches from behind the cyclist will, if safe for the cyclist, facilitate an overtaking manoeuvre by moving to the right of the lane.

Drivers of vehicles must not intimidate a cyclist into moving to the right. ‘” Other planned changes include that ban on children riding alone on the road, which ConBici warns will “mean cancelling projects encouraging children to travel by bike to school – some of which are supported by the national traffic authority,” and a reclassification of cycling offences as “serious” instead of “minor,” which it describes as “Yet another hammer blow for cyclists.

  • ” ConBici acknowledges that some measures are to be welcomed, including that local authorities will have the power to allow cycling on the pavement, albeit with the stipulation that “the pavement is at least three meters wide, uncrowded, and cyclists remain at least one metre away from doorways;

” However, its conclusion of the reforms when taken as a whole is a damning one. “These measures will push Spain further backwards, prevent the growth of sustainable transport, and only favour those multinationals that have dominated the vehicle and oil industries for decades,” it says.

ConBici adds: “In short, while there are a couple of positive points that reflect years of campaigning, these points are over-shadowed by several extremely negative proposals that will seriously damage cycling in Spain.

Urgent reconsideration is needed.

Do cyclists legally have to wear a helmet?

The Legal Position on Cycle Helmets – There is no legal requirement to wear a helmet. There are however consequences for not wearing a helmet. If you are cycling and are injured due to another person’s fault you would be able to claim compensation. If you suffer a brain injury and are unable to work or look after yourself the value of your claim will be high.

  • With this in mind it is important to know if you don’t wear a helmet, in some circumstances, the law may reduce your compensation;
  • If this happens you may not recover enough money to meet your future needs, with devastating consequences;

The starting point is the Law Reform (Contributory Negligence) Act 1945. Under this Act, if you suffer damage as a result of your own fault and the fault of another, your compensation shall be reduced in proportion to your responsibility for the damage.

  1. For this to happen it must be shown you failed to take reasonable care for your own safety and this failure contributed to your damage;
  2. This is known as contributory negligence;
  3. In Smith v Finch the cyclist (C), was not wearing a helmet and was struck by a motorcyclist on the road;

The court found the motorcyclist to be at fault for the collision. When considering contributory negligence, the court noted the Highway Code recommendation “you should wear a cycle helmet which conforms to current regulations” and found not wearing a helmet exposes a cyclist to the risk of greater injury; therefore it would not be sensible to not wear a helmet.

If you don’t wear a helmet it is likely a court will find you failed to take reasonable care for your own safety. The next issue for the court was to decide whether a failure to wear a helmet contributed to the cyclist’s serious head injuries.

The court looked at whether a helmet conforming to BSEN 1078 would have made a difference. Helmets meeting this standard provide good protection as long as the impact speed is 12mph or less and the impact location is above the test area. The cyclist in this case was travelling faster than 12mph and the impact location was the back of head, below the lower edge of a cycle helmet.

  1. The court found wearing a cycle helmet would not have made a difference;
  2. There was no contributory negligence and C’s compensation was not reduced;
  3. In Reynolds v Strutt & Parker LLP the court found there was contributory negligence;
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In this case the cyclist (C) was at a work activities afternoon and took part in a cycle race around a country park. There were 12 cyclists involved, only one (not C) wore a helmet. C lost control, came off their bike and sustained permanently disabling brain injuries.

The court found C’s employer to be at fault for failing to properly assess the need to require helmets to be used and failing to communicate this to the participants. When considering contributory negligence the court followed the approach in Smith v Finch .

The court held C would have been aware helmets were available, if only because they had seen one other rider wearing one; and the obligation to wear a cycle helmet applied just as much here as it did on roads. The court went on to accept the speed at which C struck the ground was within the effective safety range of cycle helmets and if C had been wearing a helmet they would not have the sustained injuries they did.

The court found C ⅔ to blame and reduced their compensation by the same amount. Personally, I consider this apportionment harsh and the same split is unlikely to happen in a collision on a road between a vehicle and cyclist.

Nonetheless, this serves as an example of what a court may find if a helmet is not worn. C suffered lifelong injuries and a ⅔ reduction to their compensation will have left them significantly prejudiced.

What are the rules for cycling in Spain?

Cycling rules in Spain –

  • In Spain, everyone must drive/ride on the right-hand side of the roadway. Never ride your bike against the traffic flow.
  • If available, you must ride on bike tracks or appropriately marked trails. The speed limit is 30 km/h.
  • You are not allowed to ride on pavements, sidewalks, public parks and other pedestrian areas, except at a speed of less than 10 km/h and when the following circumstances apply:
    • There are no separate lanes for cyclists
    • The sidewalk is 3m+ wide
    • The sidewalk is not crowded (that means you can keep at least 1m distance from pedestrians and can ride in a straight line for at least 5m)
    • There are no signs or markings prohibiting bicycling.
  • If you cycle on the road, you have to stay on the right or middle lane (if available). The left lane is to be used only if there is no other way due to the circumstances of the road, or to turn left.
  • If you ride on bike paths, you must be particularly cautious when you come to sections which must be shared with pedestrians or other road users, e. pedestrian crossings.
  • It is forbidden to ride on bus lanes, which are only intended for public transport.
  • Cycling in public parks, promenades and other central pedestrian areas is permitted, provided that the priority of pedestrians is considered, and you keep within a 10 km/h limit.
  • If you are cycling close to buildings, keep a 5m+ distance from the facade.
  • You are not allowed to use mobile phones or similar handheld devices which affect your attention.
  • You are also not allowed to ride while listening to music through headphones or earbuds.
  • Unauthorized races or similar competitions are prohibited.
  • You must always keep both hands on the handlebar while riding.
  • You cannot cycle with an alcohol level exceeding 0. 5 grams / liter in blood (0. 25 milligrams / liter exhaled). Up to €500 in fines can come your way if you do.
  • You should preferably park your bike in designated places, leaving a clear passage of 3+m in width for pedestrians. It is expressly forbidden to attach bicycles to trees, traffic lights, benches, wastepaper baskets, etc.

Do you have to wear a helmet on a quad in Spain?

Riding A Motorcycle In Spain Expat Tips Published: 28 July 2020 11:52 CET Updated: 22 June 2022 11:52 CET Riding A Motorcycle In Spain – Rules, Regulations and the Law With glorious year-round weather, Spain is the perfect place in which to ride a motorcycle, moped or scooter (‘ Motos ‘ as they are commonly known here). If you are living here and looking to buy a motorcycle, or visiting for your holidays and looking to hire one, you will need to understand the laws when it comes to motorcycling in Spain. Read our guide below which is full of information and tips on motorcycling in Spain and make sure you don’t fall foul of the law.

  • What Motorcycles, Mopeds and Scooters Can I Ride? The driving licence that you hold and the codes on the back of it will determine the kind of vehicles you are permitted to drive by law;
  • There are four different classes of licence in Spain which entitle you to ride a motorcycle;

These are the AM, A1, A2 and A class and are similar to those in the UK. Let’s look at each one below. AM Class The vast majority of drivers on the roads will already hold a category B driving licence, which qualifies them for category AM and entitles them to ride a moped, scooter or lightweight ATV with two or three wheels of up to 50cc as long as the vehicle cannot exceed 45 kph.

From the age of 15 , you are entitled to ride a moped up to 50cc (45 kph maximum speed) but must first pass a simple road safety test and take a 20 question written test of which you must get at least 18 correct.

You also have to have a provisional driving licence and obtain written permission from a parent or guardian. A1 Class Once a driver has held a category B driving licence for more than 3 years, they are legally allowed to ride motorcycles, scooters or mopeds in the A1 category of up to 125cc (without sidecar) with a maximum power of 15hp.

The minimum age requirement to hold an A1 class licence is 16 years. Note that if you hold an A1 licence, you are also entitled to ride motor tricycles with a maximum power output of 15 kW (A motor tricycle is an ATV with a maximum GVM of 400 kg, or 550 kg if it is used for hauling loads).

If you are the holder of an A1 licence, you are permitted to ride vehicles in the AM licence category. To obtain an A1 category licence you will have to take four different tests. These are:-

  • Written Test – You will be exempt from this if you possess any other licence that was obtained more than one year previous.
  • A1 Class Written Test – Similar to the AM written test, however, it comprises 30 test questions. You may only get 3 questions wrong to pass.
  • Closed circuit-riding test
  • Open road test – The test typically lasts around 30 minutes and is on a route that is a little harder than that when sitting the AM test.
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A2 Class To obtain the A2 class of licence, you will need to be at least 18 years of age. The A2 licence enables the holder to drive/ride all of the vehicles under the A1 class along with motorcycles with a max output of 35 kW/47 hp with or without a sidecar. Like the A1 licence, you will need to take four different tests to be granted one. They are:-

  • A written road traffic test – You will not need to take this if you already hold a B or A1 licence.
  • A motorcycle specific test – This is the same as the A1 test. If you already hold an A1 licence you will not have to take this.
  • Closed circuit-riding test – The test is divided into three separate parts including an exercise with the engine off, a low-speed test and a high-speed test. If you have been issued an A1 licence more than two years ago you will be exempt from this test.
  • Open road test – This is a test that is completed on public roads and is similar to that taken to obtain the A1 licence.

A Class Once you have held your A2 licence for at least two years, you may apply for an A-Class licence. The licence entitles the holder to drive any motorcycle of any power output or weight on public roads including those under the AM, A1 and A2 categories. To hold this licence you must be at least 20 years of age. From the age of 18, you are allowed to ride a motorcycle over 125cc, but your licence must include Category A.

For this, you will need to take some lessons and will need to take a motorcycle test as outlined above. Obtaining Your Driving Licence In Spain The following page from the DGT traffic authority provides you with everything you need to know about the different driving licences in Spain including how to get one, associated fees, the points system, taking your test, choosing a driving school and lots more.

https://sede. dgt. gob. es/es/permisos-de-conducir/ Renewing Motorcycle Licences Category A and A1 licences must be renewed every 10 years for those up to 45 years of age, every 5 years for those aged between 45 and 70 years and every 2 years for those aged above 70.

Category B licence holders are also permitted to ride three-wheeled bikes and tricycles as long as two of the wheels are on the same axle. Quads are also permitted up to 550 kg and 30hp. Renting a Scooter or Moped in Spain If you are not a Spanish resident and visiting Spain for your holidays, you must be at least 18 years of age and have a Class B driving licence before you can ride a 50cc moped here.

If you have held your driver’s licence for at least 3 years, you can hire a motorcycle with an engine of up to 125cc. Note that any motorcycle or moped under 50cc may not be ridden on a motorway. By law, motorcycles (not mopeds) must use daytime running lights/dipped headlights at all times.

Required Safety Equipment Although you are required by law to wear a crash helmet, it’s an all too common occurrence to see so many moped, scooter and motorcycle riders in Spain not wearing one! EU law is clear on this and states that any motorcycle, moped or quad on a public road must be ridden with the occupant/s wearing an ECE 22.

05 approved safety helmet. Failure to do so can result in a fine of €100. If you have a valid medical reason for not wearing one and can provide a medical certificate to prove it, you may be exempt from wearing a helmet. Pillion Passenger Laws Carrying a pillion passenger on a motorcycle or moped in Spain is perfectly legal, but there are specific rules that have to be adhered to when doing so.

Firstly, the passenger needs to be 12 years of age or above. However, there is an exception to this rule in that the passenger can be 7 years of age or above if the main rider is the parent, guardian or third party who has been authorised in writing by the parent or guardian.

The main rider must also have a full licence for the motorcycle and be over the age of 18. The vehicle also has to have the correct seating for a passenger and only one passenger is permitted at any one time. Both the main rider and passenger need to wear crash helmets, which need to be fully fastened. Documentation You will need to carry the following documentation with you:-

  • Valid driving licence
  • ITV/MOT Certificate – Inspección técnica de vehículos
  • Logbook – Permiso de Circulación
  • Insurance Policy
  • European Accident Agreement Form

You should also carry a High Visibility jacket with you in the event of a breakdown. Motorcycle Speed Limits The speed limit for motorcycles and mopeds on Spanish roads are as follows.

  • Urban Roads (No Hard Shoulder) – Max 90 Kph for motorcycles, 45 Kph for mopeds, tricycles and light quads.
  • Non-Urban Roads (With Hard Shoulder) – 100 Kph for motorcycles, 45 Kph for mopeds, tricycles and light quads.
  • Motorways – Max 120 Kph motorcycles. Mopeds, tricycles and quads are not permitted.

In May 2021, new speed limits for built-up areas such as cities, towns and villages came into force. You can read more about these via our page,  Spain’s New Urban Speed Limits Come Into Force From May 11 Moped and Motorcycle Road Tax As with any motor vehicle on Spanish roads, you are liable to pay Spanish road tax or IVTM. For further details about IVTM including current prices, please see our other article  https://www.

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Two other stipulations are that the passenger’s feet need to be able to reach the footrests of the motorcycle and no passenger must travel between the main rider and the handlebars. healthplanspain. com/blog/expat-tips/180-car-road-tax-ivtm-in-spain-an-expat-s-guide.

html ITV/MOT Inspection Mopeds and motorcycles like cars will need to periodically have an ITV inspection and will depend on their age. Motorcycles are exempt from inspection for the first four years , then they have to take the test every two years. Mopeds are exempt for the first three years and then must be tested every two years.

  • You can read more about the ITV test in Spain here  https://www;
  • healthplanspain;
  • com/blog/expat-tips/118-all-about-the-car-itv-test-in-spain;
  • html Insurance Requirements When motorcycling in Spain, there is a minimum insurance cover of third-party which is a requirement for all moped and motorcycle riders;

Intercoms and Headsets Intercoms and headsets that are attached to receiving devices are permitted in Spain as long as they are not inserted into the ear and thereby restricting the ability to hear external sounds. Private Health Insurance in Spain for Expats Please check out our current range of expat private health insurance products all of which are in English and underwritten by Bupa.

Do you have to wear a helmet on a scooter in Spain?

They must not be used on pavements, are banned from some types of roads and the drivers can be subject to breathalyser tests. But do they need insurance? – The new Traffic Law which comes into force in Spain on 21 March makes it obligatory for anyone driving an electric scooter or any other personal mobility vehicle to wear a helmet.

It does not impose this directly, but gives councils the power to regulate it through local bylaws, and failing to comply can lead to a fine of up to 200 euros and the vehicle being immobilised. People who drive individual scooters of this type may not wear earphones or travel at more than 25 kilometres per hour, and can be subjected to a breathalyser test.

If they are over the limit, they can be fined between 500 and 1,000 euros. For under-18s, the limit is zero. Nor can electric scooters be driven on pavements, in pedestrian areas, on dual carriageways and motorways, through urban tunnels and certain parts of towns.

Is cycling in Spain safe?

Don’t be oblivious to safety concerns – To a large extent cycling in Spain is relatively safe, with well-marked routes and wide cycle lanes provided on busier stretches of popular cycling areas. That said, it’s important to keep safety foremost in mind by observing the rules of the road and wearing a helmet at all times.

What happens if you don’t wear a bike helmet?

Who is at Risk –

  • Riding without a bicycle helmet significantly increases the risk of sustaining a head injury in the event of a crash. Nonhelmeted riders are 14 times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than helmeted riders.
  • Children ages 10 to 14 are at greater risk for traumatic brain injury from a bicycle-related crash compared with younger children, most likely because helmet use declines as children age. Helmet use is lowest (for all ages) among children ages 11 to 14 (11 percent).
  • Correct fit and proper positioning are essential to the effectiveness of bike helmets at reducing injury. One study found that children whose helmets fit poorly are at twice the risk of head injury in a crash compared with children whose helmet fit is excellent In addition, children who wear their helmets tipped back on their heads have a 52 percent greater risk of head injury than those who wear their helmets centered on their heads.
  • Children ages 14 and under are five times more likely to be injured in a bicycle-related crash than older riders.
  • Males account for 82 percent of bicycle-related deaths and 70 percent of nonfatal injuries among children ages 14 and under. Children ages 10 to 14, especially males, have the highest death rate of all ages from bicycle-related head injury.

Is it illegal to cycle on the pavement 2022?

The Highway Code states this more emphatically, stating in Rule 64 that ‘ You MUST NOT cycle on a pavement ‘. It also advises that cyclists ‘take care when passing pedestrians, especially children, older or disabled people, and allow them plenty of room’.

Do you have to wear a helmet on a moped in Spain?

Posted May 2nd, 2018 and filed under Motoring in Spain. What Is The Law In Spain On Wearing Helmets On Bicyles For those who are unsure of the legalities regarding the use of helmets in Spain, drivers and passengers of motorcycles, or motorcycles with side-cars, three-wheeled vehicles, mopeds and quads must use properly approved helmets. Not using a helmet is considered a serious infraction that could lose you three points from a driving licence. Remember that if a moped or motorcycle passenger does not use a helmet, it is the driver who is sanctioned, although in this case, it would not lead to loss of points.

The driver is considered responsible when setting off knowing that a passenger was not wearing a helmet. If you are not wearing a helmet properly or without fastening it, this will be sanctioned as if you were not wearing it all, which is a serious infraction.

Remember that if because of a breakdown you have to push a moped on the hard shoulder you are considered a “pedestrian” so you don’t have to put on a helmet if you wish. But if the problem is with a motorcycle and you have to push it too on the hard shoulder, then you must use the helmet as you are deemed a driver.

Do you have to wear a helmet on a scooter in Spain?

They must not be used on pavements, are banned from some types of roads and the drivers can be subject to breathalyser tests. But do they need insurance? – The new Traffic Law which comes into force in Spain on 21 March makes it obligatory for anyone driving an electric scooter or any other personal mobility vehicle to wear a helmet.

It does not impose this directly, but gives councils the power to regulate it through local bylaws, and failing to comply can lead to a fine of up to 200 euros and the vehicle being immobilised. People who drive individual scooters of this type may not wear earphones or travel at more than 25 kilometres per hour, and can be subjected to a breathalyser test.

If they are over the limit, they can be fined between 500 and 1,000 euros. For under-18s, the limit is zero. Nor can electric scooters be driven on pavements, in pedestrian areas, on dual carriageways and motorways, through urban tunnels and certain parts of towns.