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Taking your 4-year-old child for a bike ride? Read this first

Next time you decide to take your four-year-old on a two-wheeler ride, there are some things you need to ensure to avoid being pulled up by the traffic department. 

Centre changes Motor vehicles Act, new law for kids safety on bikes
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Mumbai, First Published Oct 26, 2021, 3:15 PM IST
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Next time you decide to take your four-year-old on a two-wheeler ride, there are some things you need to ensure to avoid being pulled up by the traffic department. The central government has amended Section 129 of the Motor vehicles Act which specifies some new safety measures  

The new law, which provides for the measures for the safety of children below four years of age riding or being carried on a motorcycle, now mandate the use of a safety harness for attaching the child to the two-wheeler rider. 

According to the new regulations, the safety harness would be worn by the child like a vest. The vest would need to be adjustable, with a pair of straps attached to the vest and forming shoulder loops to be worn by the driver. This way, the upper torso of the child is securely attached to the rider. The use of protective gear, including safety harnesses, will have to be continued till the Bureau of Indian Standards prescribes further specifications.

The amended law specifies that the safety harness must be lightweight, adjustable, waterproof and durable. The harness needs to be of heavy nylon or multifilament nylon material with high-density foam. It should be designed to hold weight up to 30 kg.

Besides, the bike rider will also have to ensure that the child pillion passenger aged between nine months and four years wears his/her own crash helmet which fits the head or wears a bicycle helmet complying with ASTM 1447 or European (CEN) BS EN 1080/BS EN 1078 standard. The amended law also specifies that the speed of the motorcycle with the child up to age 4 years being carried as a pillion, shall not be more than 40 kmph.

According to the Transport Research Wing of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, at least 11,168 children were killed due to road crashes in 2019, that is, 31 child deaths every day. Child deaths went up by 11.94 per cent or 1,191 over 2018. The worrying statistics prompted the government to step in and take corrective actions.

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