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Can children ride on a motorcycle in Louisiana?

For many children in Louisiana, summer break is just starting. During the long, hot summer months, Louisiana parents are looking for ways to keep their children busy and out of trouble. For some families, this may mean going on vacation or enrolling in camp. In others, it may mean getting children involved in new hobbies or interested in their parents' hobbies.

One hobby for many Louisiana residents is motorcycling. Not only do motorcycles give people the freedom to cheaply and efficiently get from place to place, they also provide a certain thrill. On the other hand, these small vehicles provide very little protection in case of an accident and can be dangerous. Louisiana parents may wonder, therefore, if children are allowed to ride on motorcycles.

Under Louisiana Revised Statutes section 32:191, there are restrictions about who can ride on a motorcycle within the state. This statute prohibits children that require a child safety seat -- either forward facing or rear facing -- to ride on a motorcycle.

If the child does not require a safety seat, the statute still explains that the child must be at least 5-year-old, wear an approved motorcycle helmet and be properly seated on the bike. In order to be properly seated, the motorcycle must have a permanent seat for a passenger, according to this section. Motorcyclists are prohibited from carrying a child if the motorcycle is only designed for one person.

Furthermore, in order for it to be legal to carry the child, the child must not interfere with the operation of the motorcycle, obstruct the view of the driver or prevent the motorcyclist from reaching the handlebars.

Whether or not a child is riding on a motorcycle, the possibility for a motorcycle accident caused by another motorist exists. These accidents can be devastating to motorcyclists and passengers alike. In these cases, accident victims can suffer serious injuries. By speaking with an attorney, people can get specific legal advice -- which this blog post cannot provide -- about their legal options following such an accident.

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