Motorcycle safety is an issue that we feel very strongly about here at MotorEagles. Our goal is to educate riders and non-riders about how they can more safely co-exist on the roads. One great way to help riders learn about safety on the roads is motorcycle safety courses.
Most states offer some form of motorcycle safety course that is designed to meet the needs of every experience level. Even if you’ve been riding for years, it can be a good idea to take a refresher course every so often to help you stay sharp and keep you safe.
Some states require new riders to take a safety course before obtaining their license. Other states offer it as an alternative to taking a road skills test. If you are unsure what your state requires or offers, it is best to check with your local bureau of motor vehicles office.
Here in Ohio, riders are allowed to take a certified safety course in place of a riding skills test. As long as you attend the course and present your certificate within 90 days of completion, you will not have to take a riding skills test to get your Ohio motorcycle license.
In September, Pennsylvania became the most recent state to require riders younger than 18 to complete a safety course before they are eligible for a motorcycle license. New riders are introduced to riding fundamentals including proper operation of a motorcycle, as well as the laws applying to motorcycles, in the basic rider course. The 15-hour course includes both classroom and practical instruction.
While this is not meant to be a comprehensive list of all states that require or offer a safety course before getting your license, here are some of the states that do.
States that require riders younger than 21 to complete a safety course before they can get a permit or license:
States that require riders younger than 18 to complete a safety course before they can get a permit or license:
- North Carolina
States that allow riders to take a safety course in place of a written or skills test:
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New York
- West Virginia
Other states with different laws involving safety courses include:
- Connecticut requires riders to take a written test and then complete safety course before receiving their motorcycle endorsement.
- Oregon requires all drivers younger than 51 to take a safety course if they do not have a valid motorcycle endorsement from another state.
- Rhode Island and Texas require all riders to complete a safety course.
At MotorEagles, we want to know what you think. Do you think riders younger than 18 should be required to take a safety course before they can get their license or endorsement? Do you think it’s a good idea for all riders to take a safety course?
Let us know what you think by commenting on this post. We always appreciate hearing what you think.