Motorcycle Helmets Protect Your Head and Brain
Full Gear Starts at the Top with Headgear
Studies have repeatedly proven that if you are involved in a crash, the single-best thing you can do to better the odds you'll come out ahead is wear a good quality helmet, preferably one that meets both DOT and Snell standards. Follow these links to learn how to choose a helmet and why you should choose to wear one every time you ride.
For even more information about helmets in the form of educational materials for distribution and presentations, go to our Educational Materials page.
How to Select a Helmet That Meets DOT Standards and Fits Correctly
- HelmetCheck.org - a repository of helmet-related information, research, and public service announcements for the benefit of consumers, policymakers, and law enforcement, this website developed by MIC's Helmet Task Force not only enables riders to verify that the helmet they own or are considering for purchase complies with the U.S. DOT safety standard FMVSS 218 but also provides them access to consumer information about DOT-compliant helmets produced by helmet manufacturers who voluntarily participate in the database
- Choosing a New Motorcycle Helmet - this page, with images you can enlarge of brightly colored and properly fitting full-face helmets, will tell you what you need to know to select a new helmet, and it links to a text version of this SMARTER resource so you can print it and take it along with you when you shop
- What You Should Know About Motorcycle Helmets - MSF, as part of its Cycle Safety Information series, produced this four-page document explaining the basic construction of a helmet, how helmets work, and how to choose one that fits
- Bogus Helmets: What You Know Could Save Your Life! - the Washington State Patrol, in cooperation with the Washington Traffic Safety Commission, produced this four-page helmet-shopping guide to explain the differences between real helmets that have been manufactured to meet DOT standards and fake, novelty-style helmets with thin shells
- How to Identify Unsafe Motorcycle Helmets - a trifold brochure from NHTSA that describes the characteristics of noncompliant helmets (download and print)
- How to Choose the Right Motorcycle Helmet - video by NHTSA on how to select "the most critical piece of safety gear a motorcyclist can use"
- Motorcycle Helmet Guides at Revzilla - a commercial website; however, we found the information here regarding motorcycle helmets to be comprehensive and informative and that the multitude of guides available will likely address any question you may have regarding the litany of details associated with the proper fit and selection of a new helmet
Videos That Show Helmets Work and That Encourage Helmet Use
- Get Your Head into It - safety video by the Motorcycle Industry Council and the Motorcycle Safety Foundation encouraging the use of helmets, especially full-face
- What Happens to a Motorcycle Helmet in a Crash?
- Wear It Every Time You Ride - a NHTSA video with the message that a helmet only works if it's on your head
- Why Helmets Are Still Wise - watch video of WZZM-13 news report simulating how helmets work when reporter Alex Shabad strikes a watermelon with a hammer, first when it is covered with a helmet and then when it is not
- Head-and-Helmet Hammer Test
FAQs About Motorcycle Helmets, Helmet Use, and Helmet Laws
- NTSB Questions and Answers on Motorcycle Helmets - this document answers 14 common questions about helmets, including the one many people assert is why wearing a helmet should not be mandatory by law: Doesn’t the decision not to use a helmet only affect the motorcycle rider or passenger?
- Motorcycle Helmets: Common Myths and the Facts - a SMARTER resource that refutes seven common myths that are often used by helmet-law opponents to mislead lawmakers, the general public, and even other motorcyclists to think that wearing a helmet increases injuries and contributes to crash causation
- Should You Wear a Full-face Helmet?