In August, 2007, Jarrad Cole, was heading to college and wanted a bike. He got his motorcycle permit and bought a used Suzuki GSX-R. Twenty minutes later, practicing in front of his dad's house, he was thrown into a retaining wall and died instantly from chest injuries.

His brother and a friend decided the laws governing young people and motorcycle training needed to be changed in California and change it they did.

The new law will see teens have to take a 15 hour motorcycle safety course BEFORE they are allowed to get a learners permit to ride.
The permit allows the teen to ride on streets, but not at night, not on freeways and not with passengers. After six months, the teen qualifies for a motorcycle license. Teens under age 18, though, still cannot drive between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m., and can't have passengers under age 20.

My personal opinion is that this law is a GREAT first step but I think it needs to be taken one step farther. I feel that everyone who wants to get on a motorcycle - that does not already have a motorcycle endorsement should be required to take training.

Here in Canada our training programs are far more costly than in the US - none the less, being trained can save your life and give you the skills and knowledge necessary for surviving the mean streets of urban riding and the rigors and perils of road riding.

I commend the young men who decided to impact the world in a positive way.

What are your thoughts on mandatory rider training? I would love to know.

Join the discussion here in my blog, on Facebook or in our forums on

In the New Today:

In Jerusalem: Avi Cohen is buried and remembered

In Japan - we finally know why the 2011 Kawasaki ZX 10R production is being held up

In the wild and weird category a combo bike/car is being touted as the next great idea for urban commuting

In the US we are saying good by to Guitarist 'Mean' Gene Kelton

Also in the US the courts have reopened the defective motorcycle helmet claim against Fulmer Helmets

Please if you are attending New Year's parties, plan your way home in advance!
If you are driving- please take care on the roads and cherish those you love the way you cherish your motorcycle.

Belt Drive Betty
Editor & Rider

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