Child-sized motorcycles that have become illegal in the United States could be shipped to Canada for sale to children north of the 49th.
That’s the opinion of a Jefferson City, Missouri, motorcycle dealer, following a change in U.S. law that prohibits the sale of anything that might allow children to absorb any amount of lead — a category that includes small motorcycles and ATVs.
Even though kids are unlikely to eat their small motorcycles, and thus unlikely to absorb any lead, the law leaves no room for margins of error: if there’s lead, and kids might use it, you can’t sell it. Period.
In fact, you can’t even lend it. Libraries will no longer be permitted to lend books that have lead-based ink in them. And children’s motorcycles that contain lead — as in batteries and various other components — cannot be sold.
The owner of Larry’s Motor Sports in Jefferson City said dealers are now sitting with millions of dollars worth of small bikes and ATVs that they can’t sell. Manufacturers might buy them back, he said, and ship them to Canada or Mexico, where it’s still legal to sell them.
The Motorcycle Industry Council in the U.S. is fighting for an exemption to the law, but a lawyer for the organization has told the press group AP that it’s unlikely one will be granted.