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Author Topic: Baby on board motorcycle?
wanderwoman
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I was driving home tonight and went past a trailer park. Beside one of the trailers I saw a man on a motorcycle and two women standing next to the motorcycle, one of them holding a baby (no older than six months, is my guess by size). Woman B handed the baby to woman A, then got on the motorcycle behind the man.

Then woman A handed the baby back to woman B! Who was sitting on the motorcycle!

I should have done something. But what should I have done? My son said he would have parked the car to block these people, then called the police. I was pretty much trapped in traffic with no cell phone. And yet I wish I had done something.

I'm not sure I can sleep tonight thinking about this baby being put on a motorcycle. I hope the baby is ok. Has anyone else been in this kind of situation? What did you do?

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Midgard_Dragon
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Did you see the motorcycle actually drive off, or just the baby being handed back then assume the woman was gonna ride with the baby? Just curious, as it could have been a "let me tell my baby goodbye one more time" moment and the baby was eventually handed back.

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wanderwoman
Bluetooth Christmas


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quote:
Originally posted by Midgard_Dragon:
Did you see the motorcycle actually drive off, or just the baby being handed back then assume the woman was gonna ride with the baby? Just curious, as it could have been a "let me tell my baby goodbye one more time" moment and the baby was eventually handed back.

I didn't see the motorcycle drive off. It looked a lot to me like the baby was being settled in for a ride on the motorcycle, but I would really like to believe that it was the "let me tell my baby goodbye one more time" moment you describe. I really hope that's what it was.

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Squishy0405
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In any event call 911 OR research online to ask for your police non emergency #. I need to save it again in my phone, no kids unstrapped in carseats on my watch!

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CuffGirl
I Saw Three Shipments


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just an FYI from someone who works at a police dept. and answers the non-emergency line: even if it is illegal they wont be able to do anything since they didn't catch them in the act, but if you ever see that bike again and get a plate number, they may send an officer over just to have a nice chat with the owner of the bike. That sight would make me nervous as well.

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sherri_lu
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Babies on motorcycles is a common site in South East Asia & other parts of the world. Instead of calling the police, maybe you should mind your own business
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Midgard_Dragon
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sherri_lu, wanderwoman lives in Indiana, not Southeast Asia or other parts of the world. I'm sure Indiana, like much of the U.S. has booster seat and other laws that would prevent having a baby on a motorcycle along for the ride being a legal activity.

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Jocko's Jolly
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quote:
Originally posted by sherri_lu:
Babies on motorcycles is a common site in South East Asia & other parts of the world. Instead of calling the police, maybe you should mind your own business

Just because it's common somewhere doesn't make it safe. [Roll Eyes]

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sherri_lu
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I know where Indiana is I’m saying thousands of people ride with babies on the front and back of motorcycles everyday Just because you think its not safe doesn’t make it so
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chillas
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No, but the fact that it isn't safe does make it so.

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Lainie
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quote:
Originally posted by sherri_lu:
I know where Indiana is I’m saying thousands of people ride with babies on the front and back of motorcycles everyday Just because you think its not safe doesn’t make it so

Did you miss the part about it being illegal?

Do you recommend, as a general policy, that citizens "mind their own business" instead of reporting illegal activities? Are there no illegal activities that should be reported? Where do you draw the line?

ETA: What Chillas said. How many people engage in an activity is not an indicator of how safe it is.

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wanderwoman
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quote:
Originally posted by sherri_lu:
Babies on motorcycles is a common site in South East Asia & other parts of the world. Instead of calling the police, maybe you should mind your own business

The business I'm in is child protection. So minding my own business means trying to keep kids safe. I'm keeping an eye out on my way home every day and if I see it again, I'm getting the plate number and calling the police.

Kids work in factories in Southeast Asia too, but I'm glad they aren't doing it here.

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DemonWolf
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quote:
Originally posted by sherri_lu:
I know where Indiana is I’m saying thousands of people ride with babies on the front and back of motorcycles everyday Just because you think its not safe doesn’t make it so

Some countries drink and bathe in the same water that they dump their bedpans in, too. Just because a lot of people do a thing does not mean it is safe.

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Ms. Kringle
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quote:
Originally posted by sherri_lu:
Babies on motorcycles is a common site in South East Asia & other parts of the world. Instead of calling the police, maybe you should mind your own business

What?

So, what, exactly, does your post have to do with the topic in question, other than you felt perfectly free to be rude and insulting to wanderwoman?

Just because people in other parts of the world place their babies on the backs of motorcycles does not mean that it is legal here. Nor does it mean that it is a safe thing to do with a small child.

It is illegal, as far as I am aware (I will ask my friend who rides, if anyone would know, he would, being a stickler for following the actual law), to put a child under a specific height/weight measurement on the back of a motorcycle. Mostly because it violates child safety seat laws.

That being said, piping in and telling wanderwoman to mind her own business, when said child could very well be placed at great risk to be seriously injured, or even killed? Incredibly rude on your part. Perhaps YOU should be minding your own business....

Ms. 'don't provide the double-edged sword used to run you through' K

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Tzarina
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The problem is, wanderwoman didn't see anything illegal. She saw a person holding a baby on a non-moving motorcycle. The assumption that the kid was going for a ride, really can't be made unless you saw the bike take off with the kid.

I have a bunch of pics of the baby Peanut on motorcycles, with my friends. They never took her anywhere, but she did sit on the bikes.

I don't think "keeping an eye on" a stranger's house because you think they might be doing something wrong is really necessary.

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Lainie
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That's a good point, Tzarina. However, it's not the point that sherri_lu so rudely made. Her point was silly (and did I mention, rudely made?), and that's what people are objecting to.

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wanderwoman
Bluetooth Christmas


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quote:
Originally posted by Tzarina:
The problem is, wanderwoman didn't see anything illegal. She saw a person holding a baby on a non-moving motorcycle. The assumption that the kid was going for a ride, really can't be made unless you saw the bike take off with the kid.

I have a bunch of pics of the baby Peanut on motorcycles, with my friends. They never took her anywhere, but she did sit on the bikes.

I don't think "keeping an eye on" a stranger's house because you think they might be doing something wrong is really necessary.

If you don't think it's necessary, then you are free not to do it. I think it is necessary, so I am glancing at the place as I go by, nothing more. If I don't see any babies being ridden on motorcycles, no problem.

I didn't report it mainly because I didn't see them take off. Nobody was taking a picture though. It really did look like their intention was to take off with the baby on the motorcycle. And some people actually do stupid things like that. So I'm just keeping an eye out.

ETA: Tzarina, I hope I didn't sound snarky here. The bottom line for me is that if I actually did see a baby put in danger and then something happened to that baby and I had not done anything, I would have a hard time living with the knowledge that I might have prevented it.

I have no wish to harrass people or get in their business, but I think a minimal amount of vigilance is not intrusive and just might allow me to intervene to keep a child safe.

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wanderwoman
Bluetooth Christmas


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I did some research on the law, because that was one of my questions, even if they did take off with the baby. I didn't know what the law says about babies on motorcycles.

Turns out there is no age restriction on motorcycle passengers [Eek!] , but passengers under 18 must wear a helmet and eye protection (try and find that for a six-month-old!). So that is one law they would be breaking.

Also, only one passenger is allowed on the motorcycle. So that's another one.

However, I think in general it could be charged as child endangerment if someone actually took a child that young on a motorcycle ride. But a report would probably only result in a parent being ticketed for the above two traffic violations and warned not to do it again, unless there were other compelling reasons to act further.

Edited because I meant could instead of would.

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chillas
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A child under a certain age/weight/size (depending on the state) must still be in a child restraint seat, which as far as I know would be impossible on a motorcycle. I would assume that this situation would be covered by that fact. I can't think of any reason to believe an exception would be made for a different type of motor vehicle.

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Tzarina
Xboxing Day


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quote:
Originally posted by Lainie:
That's a good point, Tzarina. However, it's not the point that sherri_lu so rudely made. Her point was silly (and did I mention, rudely made?), and that's what people are objecting to.

I wasn't referring to sherri-lu's post, which is why I didn't quote it. I was making my own observation of the OP.
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wanderwoman
Bluetooth Christmas


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quote:
Originally posted by chillas:
A child under a certain age/weight/size (depending on the state) must still be in a child restraint seat, which as far as I know would be impossible on a motorcycle. I would assume that this situation would be covered by that fact. I can't think of any reason to believe an exception would be made for a different type of motor vehicle.

Unfortunately, an exception to child restraint laws is made for motorcycles in Indiana. The only requirement for passengers under 18 is the helmet and protective eyewear.

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Lainie
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quote:
Originally posted by Tzarina:
quote:
Originally posted by Lainie:
That's a good point, Tzarina. However, it's not the point that sherri_lu so rudely made. Her point was silly (and did I mention, rudely made?), and that's what people are objecting to.

I wasn't referring to sherri-lu's post, which is why I didn't quote it. I was making my own observation of the OP.
My mistake, never mind. [Smile]

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Purple Iguana
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If they were just sitting on the motorcycle (versus driving around), there is absolutely nothing wrong with what they did. When my older boy was about 2.5 months old, my hubby sat him on a jetski just so I could take a picture. (ETA: motor off, on a trailer in a garage... not in the water or anything)

Now... if they DID intend to drive around like that with a baby, they absolutely should have been reported to the police. It's illegal to have an unrestrained baby in a car, and a car offers an infant more protection than a motorcycle does in the event of a crash. There are legal requirements as to how long a child stays in a safety seat before they no longer need it... and I wouldn't have a child on a motorcycle for ANY reason at ANY age... but that's just me.

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wanderwoman
Bluetooth Christmas


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quote:
Originally posted by Purple Iguana:
If they were just sitting on the motorcycle (versus driving around), there is absolutely nothing wrong with what they did. When my older boy was about 2.5 months old, my hubby sat him on a jetski just so I could take a picture.

Now... if they DID intend to drive around like that with a baby, they absolutely should have been reported to the police. It's illegal to have an unrestrained baby in a car, and a car offers an infant more protection than a motorcycle does in the event of a crash. There are legal requirements as to how long a child stays in a safety seat before they no longer need it... and I wouldn't have a child on a motorcycle for ANY reason at ANY age... but that's just me.

Agreed on the first part, PI, the reason I didn't do anything was because, while I saw something that would be illegal if they followed through on it, I didn't see the follow through. Although I repeat, there were no pictures being taken so I really think there was reason to be concerned.

The second part of what you said makes sense, but that's not how Indiana law works. Motorcycles are an exception to the child restraint laws.

The only laws they would have been violating were the requirement that passengers under 18 wear a helmet and eye protection, and the provision that no more than one passenger can ride with the driver. Makes no sense to me, but I looked it up and that's how it is.

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Purple Iguana
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wanderwoman, it sucks that Indiana exempts motorcycles from chile restraint laws. I'm surprised people aren't fighting to change that.

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wanderwoman
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Most people I have talked to just assumed that it was illegal to have children on motorcycles and were not aware motorcycles were exempt. But then mostly it was my coworkers and none of them ride motorcycles.

I'm definitely going to contact my state representative and state senator about it now that I know.

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Mad Jay
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Folks.. I introduce you to Vespa with baby seat

To be fair, I beleive a scooter is not powerful enough to be driven at highway speeds, and is mainly used for travelling on slow roads. [Eek!] nonetheless

In Bombay, I have seen people ride similar scooters with the kids sitting between the driver's legs. We were sitting at the local tea shop near our college once when one of our acquantainces drove by with his 3 year old between his legs, waving to us, . Since, he had to take one of his hands to wave at us, the scooter swerved and the baby dropped [Eek!] Luckily, he braked on time, the head was inches away from the rear wheel.

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Troberg
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quote:
Folks.. I introduce you to Vespa with baby seat
In Tunisia and Thailand (and probably several other countries), the Vespa is a family vehicle. Father drives, mother sits behind him, sometimes with a baby, kid sits in the lap of the father and sometimes another kid on the handlebars.

Scary...

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Bettie Page Turner
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Mad Jay, our Vespa ET4 has plenty of power to maintain highway speeds, but highway travel isn't recommended by Vespa/Piaggio. DH and I have had the Vespa on the interstate for brief hops and had no problem keeping it at 65 MPH. I would imagine that our scooter is newer and better maintained then those used in Vietnam or India as family transportation, though.

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Lydia Oh Lydia
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I guess I don't see what's wrong with someone sitting on a motorcycle and holding a baby. I would find it disturbing if someone were holding an infant while a motorcycle was moving.

As for children on motorcycles, there's a reason you can buy child-sized helmets. My niece has been riding (for varying trip lengths) since she was 3 or 4.

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Lainie
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quote:
Originally posted by Lydia Oh Lydia:
I guess I don't see what's wrong with someone sitting on a motorcycle and holding a baby.

I don't think anybody said there was anything wrong with that.

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Mad Jay
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quote:
Originally posted by Bettie Page Turner:
Mad Jay, our Vespa ET4 has plenty of power to maintain highway speeds, but highway travel isn't recommended by Vespa/Piaggio. DH and I have had the Vespa on the interstate for brief hops and had no problem keeping it at 65 MPH. I would imagine that our scooter is newer and better maintained then those used in Vietnam or India as family transportation, though.

Oh, In India, I'm sure some people do try to take the Vespa (or rather Bajaj as they call it in India) on the highway. I would think that among those people, most would refrain from taking a small child on the highway. But, you never know. At least, I don't recall seeing anyone do that, but I could be having a selective memory.

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noftessa
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quote:
Originally posted by Purple Iguana:
wanderwoman, it sucks that Indiana exempts motorcycles from chile restraint laws. I'm surprised people aren't fighting to change that.

And what, pray tell, does a chile have to do with a motorcycle? [fish]

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Dude, do we want to discuss why I was just hit in the head with a thumb?

Posts: 833 | From: San Diego, CA | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
WildaBeast
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quote:
Originally posted by Bettie Page Turner:
I would imagine that our scooter is newer and better maintained then those used in Vietnam or India as family transportation, though.

Newer probably, but better maintained I don't know. It seems to me that a family with less money would consider the scooter a huge investment and would have more incentive to maintain it properly. I have no knowledge of Asian countries, but I have anecdotal evidence that people in Latin America generally maintain their vehicles much better than we do in the US. When I was in high school I saw photos from a classmate who went to Peru of 20 year old cars that still looked brand new.

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"Unseasonable is an odd word to begin with. It sounds like it's describing something that it's impossible to sprinkle pepper on." -- Nonny

Posts: 5483 | From: Just south of Folsom Prison, CA | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
   

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