If you are new to motorcycle ownership, you will need some time to get used to the special rules that most bikers have to follow. After all, biking is different from driving a car, even if you have driven for years before buying your bike. This includes the rules you have to follow when carrying passengers. You have to make sure these passengers remain safe on the bike. Keep a few tips in mind to help you do so.
Why Passenger Safety is Important
Passengers on the back of motorcycles encounter entirely different safety risks than a passenger in the back seat of your car. These passengers do not have the protection of four walls and a seat belt.
No matter how careful everyone is, there is always a chance that an accident could happen on the bike. The impacts wrought by bike collisions are often much more serious than those of cars. Therefore, both bikers and passengers could sustain serious injuries when they occur.
So, what are a few things you can do to protect yourself?
Tip One: Make Sure You Can Carry Passengers
There are numerous regulations that might impact your ability to carry passengers.
- If you only have a motorcycle learner’s permit, you often cannot carry anyone on the bike, with very few exceptions.
- Often, children under certain ages are not allowed to ride on the back of bikes. In some cases, they can ride as side-car passengers, however.
- Many bikes are not designed to carry more than one person. Do not attempt to carry a passenger if there is no place for them.
Tip Two: Safety First, Always
Whether you or your passengers have to wear safety gear, like helmets, will vary based on state laws. Regardless of requirements, however, you should always encourage your passengers to wear a helmet anyway. It shows them that you will do all you can to protect them. While the eventual choice might be up to them, you should at least make sure they have the option.
Tip Three: Review Your Motorcycle Insurance
Motorcycle insurance can often help compensate your passengers if they get hurt in a wreck or other accident. A couple of different types of coverage applies:
- Policies might offer medical payments or personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. This coverage can help you and your passengers pay for the injury costs.
- Other policies might offer coverage called guest passenger liability protection. If you were to be at-fault for the accident that injures the passenger, then this coverage can pay for their losses.
Because policies tend to vary, it’s best to ask your agent which parts of your coverage apply to passengers. They can tell you if you need to add any coverage to the policy to ensure this protection.
Also Read: Why You Need an Independent Agent