What you need to know to get your motorcycle license

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- Texas is the second largest state for registered motorcycles behind California. In Texas, one million motorcycles are registered, and Harris County is one of the main centers for riding in our state.

While it's illegal to ride without a license, Keith Rovell, the General Manager of MRH Rider Training, says a large number of riders are.

"In Harris County Texas, 40 percent of motorcyclists are riding without a license. They're riding around dirty, is what we call it. That's dangerous for a couple of reasons. Number one, you think of tickets, you can get a ticket. But, the main thing is, should you be involved in an accident, there's a good chance your insurance will not pay because you are doing something that is not legal," explains Rovell.

Now, more and more riders, like Limont Pearce are making being behind the wheel official.

"I decided to get my motorcycle license to be safe and be legal and to keep from getting arrested and have my bike hauled away," he says.

Anthony Addison got his license long ago. "I've been riding for over 30 years, and I've taken almost every single course they've offered in Texas. I believe training is always good."

Both men took a motorcycle safety course recently at MRH Rider Training with Keith Rovell and Chris Beireis. MRH is one of 250 locations in the State of Texas where riders can complete the course that costs around $250.

"Since 2009, the state of TX has declared that you must take a motorcycle safety course approved by the state," says Rovell.

Beireis adds, "You must take roughly 5-6 hours of classroom training and then approximately 10-12 hours of riding time."

After the course, riders must complete a written test consisting of 25 multiple choice questions and an on-cycle test.

"Once you have done that, all you have to do is take the completion card to any DPS license branch. There is a fee, I think $16 is what you have to pay, and you get the M, which means you're a licensed motorcyclist," says Rovell.

After the course, Pearce says, it's worth it. "Just to have the knowledge to deal with everything thrown at you with Houston traffic because we all know Houston traffic."

Addison agrees. "You need to invest your money in yourself first before you spend it all on your bike."

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