What Is a “DOT-Certified” Motorcycle Helmet?

What Is a “DOT-Certified” Motorcycle Helmet?

Motorcycles might be the most thrilling form of modern transport, but as they speed in and out of traffic, as if gridlock is something that happens only to other vehicles, riders must be acutely aware of the dangers they face. They are driving an inherently unstable vehicle and are utterly exposed to the elements.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that over 20 percent of motorcyclists killed in Louisiana in 2013 were not wearing helmets at the time of the crash. In the same report, the NHTSA encouraged riders to make the investment: Helmets saved the lives of over 1,630 riders in 2013 and could have prevented another 715 deaths if the riders had been wearing helmets.

Unfortunately, just wearing a helmet is not enough to ensure you are well protected. You also need to confirm that the helmet you buy complies with federal safety standards. If you are ever involved in a crash, a cheap, flimsy, or otherwise inadequate piece of equipment may not keep you safe.

If you were hurt in an accident with a reckless or negligent motorist, you could face significant time in the hospital or away from work. Speak to a Monroe personal injury lawyer at Campbell, House, & Cummins as soon as possible about how to file a claim for compensation.

Taking immediate action allows our motorcycle accident attorneys to investigate your case thoroughly while all of the evidence is still available. Call 318-855-0285 to schedule a consultation.

What Is a “DOT-Certified” Motorcycle Helmet?

A helmet is the most important piece of protective gear for any motorcyclist. The Department of Transportation (DOT) has instituted a set of motorcycle helmet safety standards to ensure riders have the very best protection.

The DOT requires that all motorcycle helmets sold in the United States comply with the minimum performance criteria set out in Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 218. A helmet that meets these specifications stands a greater chance of shielding your head from injury in a crash.

A helmet that meets DOT safety requirements will have:

  1. A thick inner liner – usually 1 inch – of firm, polystyrene foam;
  2. Sturdy chinstraps with solid rivets;
  3. A weight of about 3 pounds;
  4. No decorative elements that protrude more than two-tenths of an inch from the surface; and
  5. A sticker on the back that clearly marks the helmet as DOT-compliant.

The DOT conducts regular tests on a range of helmets on the market to gauge their effectiveness, and warns that many novelty helmets that do not meet FMVSS 218 standards leave riders at risk of injury or even death in an accident.

FMVSS 218 also requires manufacturers to mark several details on the helmet itself, such as its size, month and year of manufacture, and construction materials. If your helmet does not include this information, it may be a sign that the helmet is not DOT-compliant.

Motorcyclists can be seriously hurt in an accident. If you are feeling the effects of a crash, contact a personal injury lawyer at Campbell, House, & Cummins without delay. Our clients appreciate the knowledge and commitment we bring to their cases, as well as our willingness to work closely with them, keeping them fully informed every step of the way.

Call 318-855-0285 to set up a consultation with one of our motorcycle accident attorneys. Visit USAttorneys.com to find out more about motorcycle accident injury claims in Louisiana.

Campbell, House, & Cummins

1815 Roselawn Ave

Monroe, LA 71201