HOUSTON (NEXSTAR) – If you grew up in Texas with someone who owned a pickup truck, chances are you rode in the bed of that truck at least once or twice.
There are a lot of reasons one might ride in the back of a truck, especially since it can feel liberating to do so. But is it legal?
Texas law does not forbid anyone over the age of 18 from riding in the open bed of a truck or trailer.
However, the same cannot be said for Texans younger than 18. Drivers caught with a minor in the bed of a truck or on a trailer can face a fine between $25 and $200.
There are notable exceptions to the rule, including:
- 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
- operating the vehicle on a beach
- operating a vehicle that is the only vehicle owned or operated by the members of a household
- operating the vehicle in a hayride permitted by the governing body of or a law enforcement agency of each county or municipality in which the hayride will occur.
One last notable exception to the rule includes, “operating or towing the vehicle in a parade or in an emergency.”
Regardless of age, the risk of traveling without a seatbelt still exists, and drivers should be aware of how dangerous traveling with riders in the back of a truck or trailer can be.