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How many people can ride on a motorcycle?

Question: My wife and I love to ride our Honda 1800 Goldwing trike. Can our granddaughter ride between us on short rides? She is seven and loves to ride too.

Answer: In looking at motorcycle owner manuals, it says, "Your motorcycle is designed to carry you and one passenger." Based on that and the following additional rules, it is illegal and unsafe to take your granddaughter along for a ride.

When it comes to motorcycle operation:

• A motorcyclist may only ride on a permanent seat. Passengers may ride on a passenger seat or in a sidecar.

• Passengers under the age 18 must wear a DOT-approved helmet.

• Passengers must be able to reach both footrests while seated in the passenger seat.

• Operators and passengers must face forward with one leg on each side of the motorcycle.

• The operator of a motorcycle is prohibited from carrying passengers in a number in excess of the designed capacity of the motorcycle or sidecar attached to it.

For additional safety tips for riding with a passenger, visit motorcyclesafety.org. A portion of state statutes were used with permission from the Office of the Revisor of Statutes. If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Trp.

Jesse Grabow — Minnesota State Patrol at 1000 Highway 10 West, Detroit Lakes, MN 56501-2205. (You can follow him on Twitter @MSPPIO_NW or reach him at, jesse.grabow@state.mn.us).

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