Obviously, the smart thing to do is to not only protect children on motorcycles but to protect them well. There are plenty of manufacturers who make helmets for kids and there are probably just as many that make tot-sized bikes for four and five year olds! As long as the little ones are appropriately dressed with long sleeved shirts and pants, I see absolutely nothing wrong with taking children along for a ride and for one of the most freeing experiences in the world.
A shocking picture sent to TV20 leads to a question about motorcycles and Florida law. The answers may surprise you...
A toddler in a car seat on the back of a motorcycle, about to merge onto the interstate. This shocked one Gainesville viewer enough that they snapped these pictures and sent them to us. Their question: Is this legal?
Gainesville Motorcycle Safety Instructor Eddie May said, "I think with that one they try to leave it up to common sense, but common sense isn't so common."
As it turns out, this is legal. The law does require anyone under 21 years old to wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle and passengers must sit behind the driver....with no minimum age specified.
May said, "I would never recommend that." He says it's one of those situations where just because something is legal, it's not necessarily advisable. Like for example, the fact that after age 21, you can choose not to wear a helmet as long as you have insurance. Although Florida law does not require every rider to wear a helmet, experts say it's critical for safety on the road. Mays said, "Even if you fall down at 10 miles an hour and hit your head on the concrete, you could have serious brain injury or even worse, die."
May teaches the law at the mandatory motorcycle safety course he runs, but lessons go beyond to make sure the riders are as safe as possible through maneuvering drills and coaching.
Avid rider Derek Williamson says even with every safety precaution he's learned here, he would not take a young child on the open road. Williamson said, "It's something that you would want to share with someone, but you also want to be thoughtful about taking that person out."
Should you choose to take a child on a motorcycle, there are accepted guidelines for young passengers. For more information, visit or
I’m sick of people telling me what I should do with my children. It seems in this country the decision of the parent is becoming eroded. Wheter or not you see the carrying of a child on a motorcycle as dangerous or not is purely subjective opinion. It’s a decision for the parent good or bad. Stop pretending to love my child more than I do.
The first question you need to ask yourself is at what age should I be able to take my child with me on my motorcycle. A lot of will depend on where you live. Laws are different in each state, even in different countries. But personally as a rule of thumb, if the kid’s legs can reach the foot rest, they should be fine. If not, a child seat will become a necessity but personally I think that is a can of worms. Manufacturing quality of the seat, ability to hold your child in place, legality of the seat, etc, more questions than answers, so I would forgo really small children on motorcycles (and don’t even think about placing your child on your fuel tank).