Are Motorcyclists Putting Children in Danger When They Ride with Them?

With warm weather approaching, the call of the open road is almost deafening. That is especially true for motorcycle riders. There's nothing like the feeling of the wind as you take your bike out for the first time in the spring. However, there is an extra responsibility for motorcycle riders when it comes to safety. As careful as they can be, many times injuries and accidents involving motorcycles are caused by other motorists that don't see the rider, causing an accident and injury or unfortunately, death. This is compounded when a motorcyclist carries a passenger; another adult or most often a child.

Passengers in a car have some protection from the frame of the vehicle. A motorcyclist and any passengers on the bike have no such protection. Younger riders are at an even higher risk of suffering injuries in a motorcycle accident. According to studies, 60 percent of riders hospitalized with injuries were under licensing age. While it isn't possible to completely eliminate the risk of getting into a motorcycle accident, there are certain steps you can take to protect a child from serious injuries while riding along on a motorcycle.

Always make them wear a well-fitting helmet

A properly fitted helmet is the best way to protect a child from serious head injuries and traumatic brain injuries (TBI). TBI can cause permanent disability, impacting a child's development, social abilities, and academic performance. Hindsight is not good enough when it comes to protecting young riders.

Use a safety harness or belt and protective clothing

Yes, there are belts for motorcycles that children can use. This can prevent the child from falling off the motorcycle. Also, invest in protective clothing to protect a child's skin against cuts, lacerations, and road rash in case of a crash.

Educate child riders on motorcycle safety

Teach child riders motorcycle safety, such as how to approach and get on a motorcycle and how to safely ride as a passenger on a motorcycle. Motorcycle riders most often have the skill to ride, but passengers might not.

•· Make children ride behind the adult on a motorcycle

Motorcycle riders should not ride with a child seated in front of them - the child can fall of the motorcycle and it also makes it difficult to control the bike. The child should be placed behind them and should use a harness to hold the child in place, if necessary.

The motorcycle rider should ride responsibly

Drive defensively. Cyclists should look out for other traffic and assume that other motor vehicles are not able to see them. Follow all traffic rules.

If you or someone who is close to you has been injured by in a motorcycle accident due to negligence in Nebraska or Western Iowa, call Rich Hitz for a free consultation to learn how to receive fair compensation. Call (402) 952-4179.

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