Hi all, just a query about the status of permanent signs with "Cyclists Dismount" on them. There are a few variations and these are often seen around railway lines and crossings and there is a sign like this in Goodwood on a path that runs parallel to the train line (runs from Victoria St to Cranbrook Ave in Goodwood on the eastern side of the train line). I am wondering whether a) this is a legal sign (if so, under what law) and b) if a fine attaches to not dismounting when riding past.

I always assumed that it might lie in the railway corridor but it doesn't go anywhere near the train line.

(I know there is the bikeway on the other side of the train line but it's longer and I'd like not to have to cross the line and wait for trains)


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I'd say it's unenforceable. The correct sign for prohibiting bike riding is a red circle and diagonal bar across a bike symbol.

Bicycle riders of all ages are permitted to ride on the footpath
unless a ‘no bicycles’ sign is present (see No Bicycles signs, p.10).

From here:


Thanks Jilden, yeah that looks about right. I'm concerned there's some other quirk like a local council by-law or rail safety rule... can't find much though.

Why not write to Unley Council and ask to have it removed? They are pretty pro-cyclist.

I am guessing the sign went up in about 2013 (see below), before cyclists were allowed to ride on footpaths. You could remind them cyclists always must give way to pedestrians anyway so there should be no safety hazard; it's just like any other footpath.


On GSV it's not there in 2009, and work is in progress in the 2013 snapshot. So it looks like it was added as part of the train electrification works:


"Goodwood’s Victoria Street level crossing was reopened this afternoon after being closed during works on the Goodwood Junction Upgrade project. The crossing has been closed to vehicles since December last year to allow for early works to realign the Brown Hill Creek Culvert and then closed to pedestrians and cyclists since April for safety reasons during construction of the new Goodwood Junction. ... Landscaping, fencing and electrification works are still underway but the project is very close to completion."

So maybe Unley CC didn't put it in, but I'm guessing they still have jurisdiction?

Thanks Peter, I'd rather it stay and be unenforceable than be replaced with the correct sign :)

It's a curiosity as to who put it there and as you say (and in other threads) it might have been put there for the duration of works/landscaping etc... and not taken down.

Given the availability of the bikeway opposite it's also a real question as to whether it should be respected (despite being unenforceable). But, given the questionable status/reason for it and the facts that it is a great cut through and is hardly used by pedestrians, I think it should be used by cyclists as a shared footpath.

Of relevance  https://www.adelaidenow.com.au/messenger/west-beaches/holdfast-bay-...(Regarding Holdfast Bay Council and Jetty Road Glenelg, May 2017) "The council also voted 7-4 to install “cyclists dismount” signs on the Jetty Rd roadway and footpath even though chief executive Justin Lynch said they would have “no legal weight”. “Even though it will not totally negate our liability, it shows our intent in the court,” Cr Mikki Bouchee told the meeting."

I must confess I get a bit annoyed when cyclists don't dismount on the Adelaide University footbridge, or the underpass at Goodwood Station. But the Victoria St - Cranbrook Ave path looks safe enough. I'm guessing the reason for the sign is the path is quite narrow. But then, so are many footpaths.

Can depend on what the definition of "dismount" is. There's a couple of places I ride that have dismount signs where the section is really narrow and/or very blind corner. I have experienced the odd person on a bike nearly crashing into me coming from the other direction, going too fast for the conditions. I used to completely dismount, but now stay on my bike, feet on the ground rather than the peddles. This is because I actually take up slightly less room than walking beside my bike. More room for people coming the other way. Would this be defined as having dismounted or not is the question?

I have wondered the same often and I don't think it would wash unfortunately. Seems like these signs are a liability limiting tactic and a warning so that you can't sue the council (to the same extent) if you come a cropper.

l'm the same, straddle the trike rather than walk beside it, but then a tricycle is twice as wide as a bicycle, add me walking beside it and no one is sharing the footpath with me.

My gripe is, with the trike l can be stationary with both feet off the ground and l don't tip over, yet l must follow "bicycle rules" for ultra slow speed travel. (get off and walk it).

If a council wanted to stop bikes (and is justified in doing so) why not just use the correct sign (and the legal power that they have)? Instead they use a sign that appears mandatory and enforceable but is not and whose only purpose is to limit liability in the event of a claim.

FWIW I agree that the Victoria St Cranbrook Ave path is safe enough which is why I have queried the sign. I think the Goodwood train underpass has a different sign which might be legal under the road rules.

The sign was place there due to the large concrete structures that extend into the path.

If you hit them while riding don't come suing the council because they put up a sign

That looks like the intent but I'm not sure there are obstacles on the path these days with the new fencing (I might be wrong).

The issue is that it reads like cycling is prohibited and (my friend tells me that) pedestrians tell you this as you roll slowly past them in a safe manner after having rung your bell.

I had a look this evening, and I don't see any obstacles. There is a bit of a blind spot at the south (Cranbrook Ave) end, where the path turns fairly sharply left (as you head south). But the rest of it has good visibility and I don't see any need for a "Cyclist Dismount" sign for the length of it.

I can see that the blind spot would be an issue for pedestrians coming the other way, but this would largely be solved simply by directly people to the left of the line, like here (on the path 2 km or so away, near Emerson Railway Station).


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