In Florida, the answer to whether it is legal to ride in the back of a pickup truck is complex. While there are no laws that specifically outlaw this practice, it can be dangerous and lead to fines.
In general, riding in the back of a pickup truck is not recommended by safety experts due to the potential for injury. Without proper restraints, passengers in the back of a truck can be thrown from the vehicle in an accident or if the driver takes a sudden turn or stops quickly.
Additionally, riding in the back of a truck could increase risk for occupants in other vehicles if something falls out of the bed or someone jumps out unexpectedly.
In addition, some counties and municipalities have their own regulations regarding riding in the back of pickup trucks. For example, Miami-Dade County has a law that prohibits anyone from riding or being transported in any part of a vehicle “not intended for passengers” such as an open bed of a pickup truck. Violators can face fines up to $500.
The Florida Highway Patrol also has guidelines on its website recommending that children younger than 18 should never ride in an open-bed truck and that all passengers should have appropriate safety restraints such as seatbelts or harnesses.
Overall, although there are no laws specifically prohibiting riding in the back of pickup trucks, it is not recommended due to potential safety risks and potential fines from local municipalities. It is best for everyone involved to use appropriate restraints at all times regardless of age.