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What should you look for when buying a helmet?
  • Only buy helmets that meet the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) standard for bicycle helmets. The federal government requires all helmets manufactured after March 10, 1999, to meet the CPSC standard, so look for a CPSC sticker.
  • A helmet must be constructed with thick, firm polystyrene or other shock-absorbing material. This is the essential safety ingredient. It is the polystyrene that crushes on impact to absorb the shock of the fall and reduce the likelihood of brain injury. Many helmets have foam pads. These are used for comfort and sizing. They do not provide crash protection.
  • A helmet must have a strong strap and fastener to assure it will stay on in a crash.
  • Try on a helmet and adjust the straps to fit snugly. The helmet should cover the top of the forehead to be in the proper position. It should have only limited movement front to back and up and down. If the helmet cannot be adjusted to minimize both types of movement, try another size, style or brand. A helmet that isn't worn properly won't protect a rider in a crash.
  • If you fall and hit your head, your helmet has served its purpose. Don't use it again. Your helmet's essential shock-absorbing material that protects your head in a crash may not retain its cushioning properties after a fall. That damage is not always apparent. Either have your helmet checked by the manufacturer to make sure it's still usable or buy a new one.

Show All Answers

1. Why wear helmets?
2. What should you look for when buying a helmet?
3. Are there other safety precautions to take when riding a bicycle?
  1. Cayuga County NY Homepage

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  1. 8 Dill Street
    Auburn, NY 13021

    Phone: 315-253-1560
    Fax: 315-253-1156

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