Policies placed forth by institutions that affect students of The University of Alabama
Thousands of students on campus use personal bicycles to get to and from classes
quickly. Now, with Veo offering Cosmo e-bikes for rent, even more students are zipping down
sidewalks and roadways in a rush to get to one place or another, forcing both pedestrians and
motorists to raise their awareness to a new level.
The state of Alabama classifies bicycles as vehicles, placing them into the same
category as cars and trucks despite not always being motorized . Because of this classification,
bikes are also subject to the same regulations as classic vehicles, from following basic traffic
laws to the possibility of a DUI charge. While it may be hard to picture the UAPD chasing down
a cyclist through the quad, it is entirely possible (though perhaps not probable).
The key reason for this classification is safety. Cyclists who run red lights and stop signs
haphazardly are much more likely to get hit, and with helmets not being legally required over the
age of fourteen, severe injuries after a strike are common.
These regulations can also ensure the safety of pedestrians, not just the cyclists.
Vehicles must yield to pedestrians at crosswalks and are not allowed on sidewalks. Pedestrians
hit by bicycles can also sustain serious injuries, though less from the bicycle itself and more
from the impact with the pavement. The Cosmo e-bikes are an even greater danger, capable of
reaching greater speeds. There is even a sign on the bike that reminds riders they’re not
allowed on sidewalks.While the state of Alabama has very limited regulations for recreational
transportation devices such as skateboards, roller blades, and scooters, The University of
Alabama has its own policies for their use on campus. The policy includes skateboards,
longboards, in-line skates, roller skates, and electronic personal assistance mobility devices,
such as a Segway. This policy recommends against the use of these “recreational devices” as
transportation on campus. If used, they are regulated to bike lanes with a speed limit of five
miles per hour. Some other regulations state they cannot be used for tricks, all wheels must be
on the ground when in use, and riders must dismount and walk through intersections and
crosswalks. The only exception to this policy are individuals with disabilities using electronic
More information on bicycle policies can be found in the Code of Alabama Section
32-5A-260 through Section 32-5A-267. More information about UA’s policies, please visit the
Division of Finance and Operations Transportation Services webpage here.