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China: Around The Nation

Chinese man arrested for letting six-year-old son drive motorbike

Father fined after letting boy take control of vehicle on their journey home

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 20 August, 2017, 4:45pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 20 August, 2017, 4:46pm

A man in southwestern China has been fined for letting his six-year-old son drive a motorcycle on the road.

The boy and his father, identified by their surname Li, were seen speeding across a road in the Nanchuan district of Chongqing late in the evening with the child at the helm, state broadcaster CCTV reported on Saturday.

Surveillance footage showed the boy steering the motorcycle the entire 2-kilometre distance, police said. His father’s hands were not on the handlebars at any point.

Police identified the pair after two days, and detained Li for allowing someone who did not have a licence and was a minor to drive the vehicle.

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Li was fined 2,000 yuan (US$300), his licence was revoked, and he was ordered to “educate his child”, the CCTV report said.

The father reportedly told police that he and his son were heading home for the day when the boy had asked him if he could drive the motorcycle. The six-year-old regularly rode a bicycle, so Li agreed, not realising it would be illegal or dangerous.

Li added that during the nighttime ride, his foot had been on the vehicle’s brake just in case.

This is not the first time that young children have made headlines for operating vehicles in China.

In July, another six-year-old was seen driving a car while sitting on his father’s lap in the southern city of Qinzhou in July, sparking a police inquiry.

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Days before that incident, a 12-year-old boy stole a bus and took it for a 10-kilometre drive in Guangzhou, Guangdong province.

Back in November 2012, a five-year-old was filmed driving an excavator at a building site in Wuhan, Hubei province.