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In a previous article, our Gurnee motorcycle accident attorneys described in detail how motorcycle helmet safety testing is performed. But one important question to ask in addition to finding out how the helmets are tested is this: How does a helmet manufacturer obtain the certification?

Let’s take a look at the specifics for each:

  • Department of Transportation (DOT).  This certification is mostly based on the honor system. Helmet companies design and manufacture their helmets based on DOT standards, and then they give themselves the DOT certification. It is important to note, however, that some spot testing is performed by government agencies.
  • Snell Memorial Foundation (Snell). Helmet manufacturers submit six helmets per model to Snell to be tested. If the helmets pass the tests, the manufacturer is permitted to purchase the Snell certification for that model only. Snell also performs their own random sample testing by purchasing and testing previously Snell-certified helmets.
  • United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (ECE). Manufacturers submit a batch of helmets to be tested. After the batch passes once, the helmet must be tested again in order to receive certification.
  • British Standards Institute (BSI). This certification involves manufacturers submitting batches of helmets based on the number of helmets they are planning to release for sale to the public. For example, if the manufacturer is planning on selling 500 helmets, they must submit five for testing; 13 for testing at 501-1,200 helmets; and 20 for 1,201 to 2,000 helmets. If the batch passes all of tests, BSI will provide certification stickers for that batch of released helmets. There is no cost for this certification.

Purchasing a well designed, certified helmet is just one step you will need to undertake to ensure that you’ll be able to enjoy riding your bike for years to come. But if you have been injured in a Gurnee motorcycle accident due to the negligence of another person, you need help in preserving your legal rights. Contact the Gurnee motorcycle lawyers at Hupy and Abraham for your free copy of our book The Ultimate Guide for Motorcycle Accident Victims by calling 800.800.5678 or by filling out our online form.

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