ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Autos»
  • Car Safety & Safe Driving

Riding in the Back of a Pickup in Texas

Updated on February 2, 2013
Texas has laws regarding who may ride in the back of a pickup truck, and under what circumstances.
Texas has laws regarding who may ride in the back of a pickup truck, and under what circumstances. | Source

By Joan Whetzel

People have ridden in the back of pickup trucks for decades, most of them without incident. However, there are risks associated with riding in a pickup's cargo bed which have triggered the passing of laws in Washington DC and at least 30 states. Most of these laws are intended to protect children younger than 16 years. Can people legally ride in the bed of a pickup truck? Probably the better question to ask is: Should they?


The Common Sense Answer

Essentially, the answer is no, with few exceptions. Common sense dictates that if household items and boxes that aren't tied can fly out of the back of a pickup truck, so can unrestrained passengers. When travelling down a highway at speeds of 55 to 75 mph, any bump or sudden tap on the brakes will - at the very least - can toss those unrestrained passengers around in the truck bed and, in the worst case scenario, send them flying out of the truck and onto the road, possibly into the path of oncoming traffic.

Federal laws and statutes demand passenger compartments for vehicles designed to protect people during a traffic accident. Pickup truck cargo beds are designed to carry cargo, which should be tied down to prevent the cargo from flying out of the truck. People, and especially children, are too easily tossed out of the back of a pickup truck. In fact, For children under the age of 16, seat belts and child restraint laws apply in every state. And it goes without saying that cargo bays do not have seat belts.

Texas Law on Riding in the Back of a Pickup Truck

In Texas, the law allows people to ride in the back of pickup trucks under the following conditions:

· people riding in the bed must be 18 and older

· when vehicles that are the only vehicles owned by members of the household

· vehicles used in parades, hay rides, or on beaches, or being used in an emergency

· vehicles used in farm operations used to transport people from field to field or on farm

The law prohibits anyone under the age of 18 from riding in the back of a pickup truck, unless it's the only family vehicle or it's a government-sanctioned hayride. Otherwise it is considered an offense, a misdemeanor carrying fines of from $25 to $200.

Exceptions to the Law

The exceptions to the laws about riding in the back of a pickup truck are that the rider(s) must be over the age of 18. In addition, the exceptions include: use of the pickup in a parade, in an emergency, or on the beach; for transporting farm workers from one field to another; when the pickup is the only family vehicle, or for government sanctioned hayrides. These exceptions are allowed as a defense in court.

Resources

Harris County Texas. Riding in the Back of a Pickup.

http://www.harriscountytx.gov/CmpDocuments/36/Ask%20The%20Constable/Riding%20in%20the%20back%20of%20a%20pickup.pdf

Texas Department of Public Safety. New Traffic Laws Take Effect.

http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/director_staff/public_information/pr082301.htm

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Restrictions for Riding in Cargo Areas of Pickups.

http://www.iihs.org/laws/cargoareas.aspx#TX

Texas Department of Public Safety. Texas Occupant Restraint Laws.

http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/director_staff/public_information/seatbelt.htm

Toyota Pickup Truck Crashes

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 5 years ago from Arizona

      An eyeopener for sure. Having lived in Texas we saw this all the time. It is a scary thing and should be outlawed. Great hub on the subject.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is used to quickly and efficiently deliver files such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisements has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)