Teenage Motorcyclists: Pros and Cons

The allure of the motorcycle can be easy to understand. With over eight million bikes on the roads in the US today, and popularity growing amongst all ages—and significantly with female riders too—chances are you will see numerous motorcyclists in one trip across town.

Constructed from a variety of different materials to include steel, titanium, carbon fiber, and more, shiny metal is just one attractive feature of the motorcycle, coupled with the deep growl of the engine and the accompanying speed. Many motorcyclists have a typical rugged style too, and although it may be considered cool, usually that is a byproduct of wearing the necessary protective gear. All these factors, along with affordability and greater ease for travel in many areas, cause consumers to take an interest in purchasing motorcycles. Teenagers can be especially impressionable though, and as they begin learning to drive, they may become convinced that a motorcycle is the best choice for them. Depending on your experience with bikes, you may or may not agree; however, most parents will be concerned about safety first—and especially when that of an inexperienced sixteen-year-old may be in question.

The average motorcycle today usually weighs in at least a few hundred pounds, requiring the driver to understand how to manipulate it properly during operation so that they are not injured, with broken legs being all too common an issue when a bike falls onto a motorcyclist. Strength is required, and if a novice doesn’t possess that upon purchasing a motorcycle, most likely it will grow quickly as so many different muscle groups are used while riding. This could be daunting for a younger rider though at first and the lack of proper strength could lead to accidents if they are not properly prepared.

Statistics show that significantly less motorcyclists under 30 are in fatal accidents these days, but thousands still hit the emergency rooms each year with a wide range of injuries. And while some accidents are due to operator error, far too many are the result of negligence on the part of motorists. Other drivers may be unused to watching out for smaller vehicles or bicyclists or pedestrians, or they may be distracted, drowsy, or under the influence. Defensive driving skills are imperative to the safety of motorcyclists, and a 16- or 17-year-old may still be lacking in that area, and less equipped to handle a bike under duress in traffic. The reality is that injuries can be severe, and even fatal. Traumatic brain injuries and concussions are common, along with dislocations, broken bones, road rash, and more.

There are benefits in owning a motorcycle though, to include:

  • Less initial expense than purchasing a car (insurance rates can vary though)
  • Less gas and maintenance expense
  • Younger drivers gaining a sense of independence

Before you give the green light for your minor child to purchase and become licensed to ride a motorcycle, consider their knowledge, maturity level, and readiness for such an endeavor. Experience before heading out onto the road is necessary, and a beginner’s course could prove invaluable. Drivers under 21 must wear helmets also, and they must also have had a learner’s permit for a year with a clean driving record. It is very important for younger motorcyclists to understand that motorists often may not see them on the roads and unfortunately can pose significant threat to their safety every time they are riding.

If you or a loved one have been injured in a motorcycle accident due to the negligence of another driver, contact the attorneys at Heintz & Becker. We’ve helped victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida get compensation for their damages and medical expenses after accidents. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help!

All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.