HomeSafetyArticleGovt to mandate safety harness and helmet for motorcycles with child pillion

Govt to mandate safety harness and helmet for motorcycles with child pillion

Draft rules for safety provisions for a child carried on a motorcycle

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In order to boost passenger safety in motorcycles, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has proposed to make safety harness and helmet mandatory for child pillion passenger aged between 09 months and 4 years.

The Ministry has made draft rules vide GSR 758(E) dated 21 Oct 2021, recommending Рfor children below four years, Safety harness shall be used for attaching the child to the driver of the motorcycle. The driver shall ensure that the child pillion passenger aged between 09 months and 4 years must wear his/her own crash helmet which fits his/her head or wear bicycle helmet. As per the draft rules, the speed of a motorcycle, with a child up to age 4 years being carried as a pillion, shall not be more than 40 kmph.

When does this rule go into effect?

The rules may be called as Central Motor Vehicles (….Amendment) Rules, 2021. It shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette. The new rule shall be inserted in the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, in Rule 138, after sub-rule (6).

safety harness

On and after one year from the date of publication of these rules, the driver of a motorcycle shall ensure the following safety measures while carrying a child between the age of 0 and 4 years, on the vehicle as a pillion:


1. For children below four years, Safety harness shall be used for attaching the child to the driver of the motorcycle.

Safety harness is a vest to be worn by the child, which shall be adjustable, with a pair of straps attached to the vest and forming shoulder loops to be worn by the driver. This way, the upper torso of the child is securely attached to the driver. A feature by which this is achieved is by attaching the straps to the back of the vest and crossing the straps over the vest so that two large crossing-over loops are formed that pass between the legs of the passenger. The protective gear including safety harness shall meet the following requirements till such time the specifications are prescribed by the Bureau of Indian Standards under the Bureau of Indian Standards Act 2016:

Specifications of Safety harness:

(a) Light weight, adjustable, waterproof and durable
(b) Heavy nylon/ multifilament nylon material with high density foam
(c) Shall be designed to hold weight upto 30 kg

2. Crash helmet

The driver shall ensure that the child pillion passenger aged between 09 months and 4 years must wear his/her own crash helmet which fits his/her head or wear bicycle helmet complying with [ASTM 1447]/ [European (CEN)BS EN 1080/BS EN 1078] till such time that the specifications are prescribed by the Bureau of Indian Standards under the Bureau of Indian Standards Act 2016.

3. Speed limit

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The speed of the motorcycle with the child upto age 4 years being carried as a pillion, shall not be more than 40 kmph.

The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has sought objections and suggestions to these draft rules from stakeholders.

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