Know All About Insuring a Pillion Rider in India

With the rising rate of road accidents, the Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority of India (IRDA) has introduced some crucial amendments to two-wheeler insurance regulations for pillion riders or passengers. Read about the significance of pillion coverage in your two-wheeler insurance policy to enhance their safety.

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Does Third-party Insurance Cover Pillion Riders?

The Motor Vehicle Act states that all two-wheeler owners must have a third-party liability insurance policy. The policy covers the loss to a third party, person, or property in case of a collision or a road accident. However, the IRDAI has mandated to cover pillion riders in third-party insurance policy, which will cover the injuries or death to the pillion rider.

Laws Related to Pillion Riders in India

In India, the Motor Vehicle Act 1988 sets rules for both drivers and pillion riders, which are as follows:

  • Only two people (including the driver) can ride on a two-wheeler.
  • The passenger behind the driver should take safety precautions.
  • Section 129 of the Motor Vehicle Act requires all riders on a two-wheeler to wear helmets authorized by central government standards.
  • Previously, pillion riders were not covered under third-party liability insurance, but Section 147 now includes them for compensation in case of injury or death in a road accident.

Features of Pillion Rider Insurance

As per the IRDA, the following are the rules proposed for pillion riders in case of accidents:

  • If a pillion rider dies, their closest family member can claim up to ₹5 lakhs.
  • Surviving pillion riders can raise a claim up to ₹3 lakhs in case of injuries due to a road accident.
  • Compensation is not available if the driver injures or kills another party; priority goes to the third-party victim.
  • Only one pillion rider is eligible for compensation.
  • Child pillion riders aged between 1-5 years get 50% of the total policy sum in case of an accidental death or injury. However, the compensation will be 25% of the policy sum in case of accidental death or injury if the child pillion rider's age is less than a year.
  • The policy provides coverage of up to ₹10,000 for vehicles carrying injured persons to the hospital in case of an accident, which includes the ambulance.

You may also read: Bike Accidents in India and Insurance Claims

Benefits of Pillion Rider Coverage

Below are some common benefits of pillion rider coverage:

  • Third-party bike insurance policy now covers pillion riders, making it easier for them or their families to claim compensation for injuries or death.
  • With a comprehensive bike insurance policy, you can buy a pillion rider add-on to cover accidental death, permanent disability, or partial disability.

Key Precautions to be Followed While Riding with a Pillion Rider

Here are some essential precautions to follow when riding a two-wheeler with a pillion passenger:

  1. Understanding the bike weight capacity: Ensure your motorcycle can handle the added weight. Extra weight or overloading from a passenger can often adversely affect acceleration, braking, and suspension, leading to fatal injuries. In addition, check the brake conditions and the suspension capacity that can handle the added load.
  2. Mounting safely: Ensure the bike is stable and upright before your passenger gets on. Invite them to board only when you can control the motorcycle entirely to ensure a comfortable ride.
  3. Turning: Be aware that even slight movements when turning can affect your bike's stability with a pillion. Ask your passenger to lean in the opposite direction while you are taking turns.
  4. Braking:Instruct your pillion always to keep their feet on the foot pegs. Sudden foot-down movements can disrupt the balance, ultimately causing both the rider & the pillion to fall and get injured.

You may also read: Safety Tips for Pillion Riders

Final Words!

Usually, pillion riders are the victims of injuries despite not being at fault. Keeping in mind this vulnerability, the IRDA now grants pillion riders equal compensation as the leading rider or driver. Thus, if you frequently ride with a pillion rider, understanding the significance of this passenger coverage becomes imperative.

Disclaimer: Policybazaar does not endorse, rate or recommend any particular insurer or insurance product offered by an insurer.

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