River Road & Helmets

  • Home
  • River Road & Helmets
22 replies [Last post]
Anonymous's picture

I've convinced a racer friend that cycling outside the park is posible and we're going to Nyack. I wanted to take river road, but I seem to remember that they require helmets, and my friend does not usually wear one. Is that regulation still in effect? If so, is it usually enforced?

Personally, I wear a helmet and think everyone should, but I don't get preachy about it. It's a personal choice.

Anonymous's picture
Basil (not verified)
Not over 14???

"Not certain but if my memory serves me correctly, helmets are only required for kids under 14 on River Road.
............but now as I write this, doubt is creeping in and I'm thinking maybe they are required for adults also.
Sorry - not much help really.
Should I press ""continue"" or ""cancel""????
At least you'll have an excuse - ""I tried to find out and someone on our message board suggested it was OK for those over 14"".................""continue""!!!"

Anonymous's picture
Basil (not verified)

A park employee today confirmed helmets ARE required on River Road and, what's more (as referred to in other replies here), summonses are being given out (I believe she may have said 10 last week??)

Anonymous's picture
Mordecai Silver (not verified)
Helmets on River Road

I wouldn't worry about enforcement of that restriction. The sign also says that no bicycles with small wheels (under 24 inches, I think) are allowed on the road, so you'd also be violating the law if you rode a folding bike. These regulations I believe were made to keep BMXs off the road.

Anonymous's picture
Marc (not verified)
yes they are

"Two weekends ago, on a Richard Rosenthal ride, we were taking a break at the ranger station at the top of River Road when I noticed a solo rider, wearing a cycling cap, examining a summons. I asked him what it was for. ""Speeding!"" he joked. Then he admitted that he had been ticketed for riding without a helmet.

BTW, thanks for another nice ride in PP on Thursday - sorry that the group got disconnected, Andy mentioned that he saw you on his very last lap, after I had already left."

Anonymous's picture
John Grandits (not verified)
river road

I believe helmets are required on River road. Was riding there a few weeks ago and saw two people get tickets for riding w/out a helmet. It's a good habit to always wear one anyways.

Anonymous's picture
Keith (not verified)

Absolutely required.. I was riding on River Road with a friend who was not wearing a helmet. The police officer told him to get off his bike and walk.

Anonymous's picture
bill vojtech (not verified)
The good news...

I got them to wear helmets.

Anonymous's picture
Mordecai Silver (not verified)
The Rules on River Road

"The sign at the entrance to River Road reads thus:

Bicycles on Henry Hudson Drive


Bikes -- Multi-Speed

Minimum Wheel 24 inches

Cyclists -- Wear Protective Helmet

Minimum Age 14

I have ridden River Road many times on my track bike, and have never got a ticket for riding a single-speed. And I highly doubt that someone would get ticketed for riding a folding bike with 20"" wheels. As I said, the rules were meant to keep hordes of BMX bikes out of the park. But the ignorant PIPC officers single out the helmet rule for enforcement. If you ask why, the answer would be ""Because we say so."""
Anonymous's picture
Joao (not verified)

"I ride it on my recumbent all the time, and it has a 20"" front wheel. Nobody ever bothered me. I've also seen a lot of kids on BMX bikes and no helmets riding around. I think as along as you don't act like a jerk, they'll leave you alone."

Anonymous's picture
Chris Taeger (not verified)
Signs on River Road

Why give the PIP cops a reason to stop you? Those signs are clear: wear a helmet. Good Idea. Ignore it at your own peril, or if you have deep pockets to pay a citation

Also, Bikes are not allowed on the steep Palisade Avenue connection to River Road. I know somebody who was ticketed for riding it.

Come to think of it, why give any policeman ANYWHERE a reason to stop you? BTW, the Alpine police have a nice hidden spot to catch cyclists blowing off the red light on route 9W. Much easier to see it on the climb, almost invisible to see while cranking it at 30 MPH.

Anonymous's picture
Ron Roth (not verified)
Helmets on River Road

When I go out on solo rides, or with 1 or 2 other people, I will often ride without a helmet. (I'm not seeking advice or debate on the subject by writing this). River road is a standard ride for me at least once a week during the season, usually lidless. I have been passed by the police on the road itself, and I've chatted with them on numerous occasions both in the station house and outside. I am not saying you CAN'T get a ticket for riding there w/o a lid, or even that I won't tonight. As was pointed out by another posting, there is a sign explicitly stating that wearing one is required when riding on that roadway. But I can tell you that in my years of experience riding there, I was never stopped for not wearing one, or even given a warning regarding their necessity. And Jersey Troopers don't have a reputation for being shy about expressing displeasure at that which irks them.
In closing, however, it should be noted that the present economic environment finds the majority of the states in miserable shape with regard to their budgets. In such times, the probability of a capricious swing in sentiment toward enforcement of any law that has the potential to bring in revenue goes up significantly. Lidless riders and red light jumpers may want to keep a bit of extra cash available to compensate for their transgressions.

Anonymous's picture
Etoain Shrdlu (not verified)
Helmetless fools

Friends don't let friends ride without helmets.

So if you're solo and you don't wear a helmet? Well, 90% of all bicycle fatalities result from head injuries.

I will gladly stop to aid any fallen cyclist who wears a helmet. But if you're lying there on the ground with no helmet on, you owe your plight all to yourself. I might just be tempted to ride on and thumb my nose at your bleeding head.

Why should I ruin my day because you are too arrogant to wear a helmet?

Anonymous's picture
Mordecai Silver (not verified)
Would the PIPC police ticket these men?
Anonymous's picture
"Chainwheel" (not verified)
Deja Vu

"Ah, yes. Nothing like re-starting a year old thread...


Anonymous's picture
Chris T. (not verified)
Holy time tripping, Batman!

"I am looking at this thread, and all of a sudden, there's a post from me. ""I haven't posted to this thread -- who's copying my name and style"" sez I to self.

Then I suddenly look at the time stamp and did the obligatory double take.

Has anybody removed their helmet on the Alpine ascent on a hot day? the climb doesn't qualify for the UCI 5km rule. lol"

Anonymous's picture
Richard Rosenthal (not verified)
A short history of River Rd., helmets, and enforcement.

"The CRCA newsletter correctly suggests there was a time River Road was closed to cyclists. Charlie Komanoff lead the negotiation to get it opened to us fulltime.

There was a trade-off: in exchange for our getting this ""privilege,"" we are barred from riding up or down that wonderful, serpentine road connecting River Road to Hudson Terrace just before 9W (the climb to Englewood Cliffs), and we must now wear helmets.

I was none too happy to read in this thread a PIPC cop, having ticketed a rider for not wearing a helmet, then compelled him to walk. That could have been as much as a 4 mile walk...slipping in cleats which would endanger the rider-walker; but, of course, very likely the police told him it was for his own safety the police obliged him to walk.

After I was ticketed for riding that wonderful climb from River Road to Englewood Cliffs, I asked the cop if I could at least ride out. ""No,"" he said, ""for your own safety, walk.""

I explained to him I would have a higher profile to drivers if I were on my bike, I would get out faster if I rode, and if I walked there was a danger of my slipping because of the cleats on the pavement. He repeated, ""For your own safety, you'll walk.""

One more recollection. A helmetless rider crashed on River Rd. He had to be evacuated by an ambulance. The cop on the scene took the time to first give him a ticket for not wearing a helmet, as he lay on the ground bleeding, before calling for medical assistance.


Anonymous's picture
fendergal (not verified)
why are cyclists forbidden from the Hudson Terrace entrance?

"I have yet to figure out why you can't ride on that ""wonderful serpentine"" bit of pavement to access River Road. I've been taking my chances with riding down that hill, because A. the south entrance to River Road forces you to make a left-hand turn on a very busy road, and B. the pavement quality of the southernmost part of River Road is abysmal.

It would seem preferable to have cyclists on that road so they're not interfering with traffic flow south of the bridge. There's hardly ever any car traffic on the middle entrance of River Road anyway.

I would ask T.A. to do something about it, but they seem to have little interest in answering emailed questions from their constituents."

Anonymous's picture
Bill Vojtech (not verified)
Just eat the donuts...

Police have no legal obligation to protect you:


Anonymous's picture
Richard Rosenthal (not verified)
Read the side of the doors on police cars in some jurisdictions


How does this comport with what is written on the sides of police cars in Los Angeles and elsewhere, for all I know, even here in NYC:

""To protect and to serve.""

Maybe not a legal obligation, but, seemingly, a professional one.

Richard, of course"

Anonymous's picture
Hank Schiffman (not verified)
I have ridden the 'Forbidden Hill' by permission of the law...

A few years ago I was doing a solo on River Road, and, at the crest of the Englewood Cliff section, the road was blocked. A Palisades police officer gave me permission to ascend the hill. I have done it on the sly a number of times in the past but do not wish to tempt fate. I'm of Chris's mind, no need to give the law any reason to direct your fate. The legal system bears no relation to aerobic training and gearing. Your money is better spent on cycling related items and your time is better passed in training than in court.

Anonymous's picture
al stern (not verified)

"""Your money is better spent on cycling related items and your time is better passed in training than in court""!

""You can say that again,"" Hank!"

Anonymous's picture
Bill Vojtech (not verified)
reminds me of the postal service...

"I remember hearing the postal service claim that the ""neither rain nor snow nor sleet... etc"" slogan was not official policy, just something the architect had carved into the main post office 'cause it looked cool.

The last thing a ""public servant"" wants to do is to serve the public."

cycling trips