The National Congress of Honduras has issued a temporary ban on two-up riding because of safety concerns – but not for the ones you’d expect.
The Honduran government isn’t worried about passengers falling off of motorcycles or increased liability in the event of crashes. No, the primary concern behind the new legislation is to put a stop to drive-by shootings on motorcycles.
Hondurans has seen two high-profile murders in the last week. On Dec. 6, independent journalist Luz Marina Paz and an unidentified man were shot by a passenger on the back of a motorcycle. Paz had reportedly been threatened in recent weeks by gangs seeking protection money. The following day, former Honduran Security Minister Alfredo Landaverde, a staunch opponent of organized crime and police corruption, was gunned down, again by a passenger on the back of a motorcycle. Landaverde’s wife and another passenger were wounded in the same attack.
Because of their maneuverability, motorcycles have become popular vehicles for Honduran criminals. According to the Representative Augusto Cruz Asensio, motorcycle drive-bys account for about 90% of all recent murders.
Representatives unanimously agreed to outlaw having more than one person on a motorcycle for six months in urban areas, despite knowing the ruling would be unpopular. Honduran police and armed forces will be allowed to stop any motorcycles carrying more than one person.
[Source: National Congress of Honduras]