Riding in the bed of a pickup truck. Legal?

That pretty much explains my question?
Is it legal in Texas for a person over 18 to do this?
My nephew wants to go with my wife and I on a trip to our vacation house. We only have a two door pickup and as he is a large boy there will be an uncomfortable ride for 3 hours. He says he wants to ride in the back.

Is this legal in Texas? His IS 18 years old BTW.

http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/director_staff/public_information/pr082301.htm
States that it is illegal for people under 18 to ride in the back of a pickup. So I would say that 18 and over is legal.

In Alabama and Georgia it also depends on the speed. I think it’s illegal to ride in the back of a pickup on the Interstate but it’s legal when you’re in slow traffic (or when you live someplace where you won’t get caught). Whenever I’ve had to ride on the back of one for more than a few yards or going more than 25 mph or so I’ve usually jerry rigged a seat-belt out of bunjees or straps.

From the Texas Transportation Institute (TAMU)… *The research results showed that 4,242 cargo bed incidents occurred over a ten-year period, the majority of the drivers involved were young males, and 231 deaths occurred. But the statistics, according to De La Zerda, are probably underrepresented because crash reports do not clearly provide an appropriate abbreviation for coding the seating position, and as a result law enforcement officials are using multiple abbreviations. For example, the project staff read about 500 crash reports, and discovered that an additional 35 persons should have been coded as passengers riding in the rear of the truck.

At the time of the project, Texas state law stated that anyone could ride in an open bed under the speed of 35 miles per hour. As of last year, that law has changed. According to Transportation Code 545.414, a person commits an offense if the person operates an open-bed pickup truck or an open flatbed truck or draws an open flatbed trailer when a child younger than 18 years of age is occupying the bed of the truck or trailer. *

From the Tx DPS, there’s this following…
*(b) An offense under this section is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not less than $25 or more than $200.

© It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the person was:

(1) operating or towing the vehicle in a parade or in an emergency;

(2) operating the vehicle to transport farmworkers from one field to another field on a farm-to-market road, ranch-to-market road, or county road outside a municipality;

(3) operating the vehicle on a beach;

(4) operating a vehicle that is the only vehicle owned or operated by members of the household;

(5) or operating the vehicle in a hayride permitted by the governing body of or law enforcement agency of each county or municipality in which the hayride will occur.

(a) Compliance or noncompliance with Subsection (a) is not admissible evidence in a civil trial.

(b) In this section, “household” has the meaning assigned by Section 71.005, Family Code. *

For this instance I would rely on the old "It’ll never happen to me Fallacy"

Meaning you know what.

As long as you are ok with that…Go for it.

Oh God, that makes me pine for the old days in the 1980’s. My father would be driving and me and my brothers and maybe a couple of friends would always opt to ride in the back of his Ford F150. A half-assed warning we be given was not to sit on the sides while we were moving. He would drive with his pistol under the seat and a 12 pack of beer on the floorboard and always a beer in hand. We always had a good time as he drove a flicked cigarettes out of the window and drank beer while we got thrown around in the back.

Occasionally he would occasionally get stopped by the police for some supposed minor infraction back, after a brief chat, we would be on our way because no crime had been committed.

Well yeah, I mean usually the gun rack was already full.

So, when did Texas go all liberal on us? :slight_smile:

Effin’ A. If I passed a summer as a kid without riding in the back from New Orleans to Pensacola at least once in the 80s and early 90s then it wasn’t a real summer to me.

We regularly sat on the tailgate with our feet dangling over the side.

Looking back on it - not a great idea.

Texas also requires seat belt use. Do you have a seat belt in the back of the pickup?

I don’t think the state of Texas would allow those over 18 to ride in the bed of a pick-up if the seat-belt law is in effect in that situation.

The California Vehicle Code makes itillegal to permit to ride or to ride in any part of the vehicle that is not intended for passengers. That would seem to rule out the open bed of a pickup.

Here on the Big Island (Hawaii) a mom just died a few days ago because she somehow fell from the back of a pickup. That says nothing about the legality, but it does suggest other concerns as well. (I’m not dismissing the practice out of hand, mind you, having done it myself in Micronesia where it is standard practice. Still, an evaluation of the safety in any particular situation is clearly not a bad idea.)

OK, so wtf is a “government sanctioned hayride”? :confused:

When the father years “HEY kids,get your as out here and RIDE in the back.”

I was gonna ask this same question. Once I saw the logic of asking that question, for that reason… it seems expedient to not state truck bed riding seperately.

Also, that’s how you can get someone who has 6 people in a 4 seater… They can’t all be wearing seat belts. now can they?

Again, once I heard a police officer (On Cops, or like show) reason the law in that manner, it was interesting.

Seat belts in Texas are only compulsory for those under 17, or for any passenger in the front seat.

Anyone 18 or older in the bed of a truck does not meet those criteria, and doesn’t need a seatbelt.

When i lived in West Virginia and knew the law there, it was legal for people to ride in the bed of a pickup, if and only if the cab was full. If it could seat three, there had better be three people in the front before anyone rode in the back.

I’m not sure how age played into that law, if it did at all. But the seat belt law in WV is similar to TX: that is, only people in the front seat or under age 18 were required to wear seat belts. That would imply that minors can’t ride in truck beds, but adults are free to do so.

In Arizona, IIRC, they keep trying to push through legislation to ban this practice, and it always gets shot down in cries of ‘but what about the poor who only have one pickup truck, but large families?’. Rather than include or amend an exemption the bill dies. Meanwhile, it is considered endangerment to carry animals unsecured. (Dogs occasionally jump from backs of moving pickup trucks). It’s just sounds strange than you can carry your kids unsecured in the bed of your truck, but not your dog.