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Helmet not always mandatory: Transportation Ministry issues safety regulations for cyclists

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It’s quite something that there was not a complete set of safety regulations for riding a bicycle in Indonesia all this time, and now we have some pretty obvious ones (and one oddly dangerous one) thanks to the pandemic bike boom.

The regulation, which was signed by the Ministry of Transportation on Aug. 14 and has now come into effect, requires that every bicycle, bar some exceptions, has these seven features installed: a bicycle fender on the rear tire, a bell, a brake system, lights, a red bicycle rear reflector, white or yellow wheel reflectors, and pedals with reflectors. Additionally, bicycles that are used on the roads must fulfill the Indonesian National Standards (SNI) goods certification.

Lights and reflectors in particular allow bicycle users to ride at night or in conditions of limited visibility due to darkness, heavy rain, and fog, among others. 

A number of bicycle types, such as racing bikes and mountain bikes, are exempted from the rear fender requirement.

Cyclists are also expected to follow a number of rules, though helmets are not always mandatory. Cyclists have to wear helmets if they are riding for exercise or racing, but they are not mandatory for casual rides.

Other stipulations include the prohibition of using one’s phone or holding an umbrella while riding. Transporting passengers is not permitted unless the bicycle is equipped with an extra seat, and cyclists cannot have their bicycle hauled or pushed by a motorized vehicle.

Budi Setiyadi, the ministry’s Director General of Land Transportation, said the provisions for safety equipment are applicable to bicycles used for both general use and sports.

“In the future, we hope bicycles can be used for people’s daily transportation mode such as for going to school, office, market, or to malls,” Budi said in a statement today.

The regulation also lays out a new requirement for operators of public facilities, such as public transportation stations or terminals, office buildings, shopping malls, schools, and places of worship, in that they must provide bicycle racks.


Also Read ⁠— Cyclists ride against traffic on Jagorawi toll road, police investigate

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