USA Cycling recognizes new helmet standard

USA Cycling has recently added the European helmet standard to its list of approved standards for legal bicycle racing helmets. In 1986, USA Cycling became the first cycling federation to make hard shell helmets required for all bicycle races. At that time we acknowledged numerous government agencies, such as SNELL, ANSI, and the US CPSC. In the last few years, the UCI has made hard shell helmets mandatory for all races, and a new standard has recently appeared on the market, the European Committee for Standardization. Helmets approved by the European Committee will carry stickers (ECS or CEN) similarly to the stickers found in all American-made helmets.

At all times when participating in or preparing for an event held under a USA Cycling permit, including club rides, all licensees who are mounted on a bicycle must wear a securely fastened helmet that meets either the US DOT helmet standards or one of the following standards:

(1) American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Standard Z90.4;
(2) Snell Memorial Foundation Standard "B" or "N" series;
(3) American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standard F-1447;
(4) Canadian Standards Association (CSA) standard CAN/CSA-D113.2-M;
(5) U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) standard for bicycle helmets;
(6) European Committee for Standardization (CEN) standard for bicycle helmets

Riders shall show documentary proof of this, such as a manufacturer's label, upon request by event officials. Beginning January 1, 2010, only the DOT, CPSC, and CEN helmet standards will be recognized.

Riders should always be aware of the following:

A helmet is only effective when fitted correctly for the rider and strapped on correctly.
Once a helmet has struck an object, it may no longer be adequate to protect the user from a subsequent impact. Such a helmet should be returned to the manufacturer for evaluation or destroyed and a new helmet purchased. Such damage to a helmet may not be evident to the user.
The helmet rule is in force anyplace in the vicinity of a USA Cycling sanctioned event from the opening of registration to the final awarding of prizes for the event.

USA Cycling strongly encourages all riders to wear a helmet at all times when riding a bicycle, whether commuting, training, or racing.

This Article Published March 8, 2006 For more information contact: