Tips for Cargo Bikes with Children or Other Passengers
As a fun way to explore with multiple children on two wheels, cargo bikes are becoming more popular among families. Some bikes can handle multiple children at a time; some are sturdy enough to carry more than one child. A number of ways can be used to carry kids, depending on the bike: Older kids can sit on a bench or shelf on a rear rack, in a front bucket, box, or container; younger ones should be strapped into bike seats.
- Regulations on carrying passengers on bikes can be found in local and state laws. The League of American Bicyclists lists bicycle laws by state.
- Make sure your child bike seat fits your cargo bike. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends rear-mounted child bike seats for children between the ages of 12 months and 4 years who can sit comfortably unsupported and whose necks are strong enough to support a lightweight helmet.
- Those older than 4 should have a passenger handlebar or something to hold onto, as well as a place to put their feet. Customize your cargo bike with accessories such as handlebars, a ring handle, safety bars that surround the passengers, or foot guards.
- Protect little feet from the gears and wheels with panniers, wheel covers, or other guards.
- Have your kids practice loading and unloading the bikes. Make sure to supervise your kids while they ride.
- Having cargo on your bike will influence how you steer. As you pedal with kids, explain to them what you expect from them (no wiggling or leaning) and why (kids are helping to keep the bike stable and still for a smoother ride). You want them to stay centered on the bike and not wave their arms around.
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