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Agency Updates Motorcycle Helmet Safety

Motorcycle riders may want to double check that their helmets are safe and National Highway Transportation Safety Administration-approved. According to news reports, the agency is trying to reduce the number counterfeit safety-approved helmets and novelty helmets on the market.

Previously, the NHTSA used stickers that read “Department of Transportation” on helmets to inform riders that they were approved for the federal safety guidelines. Those stickers, NHTSA says, are too easy to counterfeit. Now, the agency will be using new stickers that read “DOT FMVSS No. 218 Certified” with a more sophisticated design, according to news reports.

NHTSA said an increase in so-called novelty helmets warrants the change.

“’Such novelty helmets do not meet federal safety requirements,’ the agency said in a news release this week; the government had tested many of these helmets and found they failed all or most of its safety tests,” according to news reports.

From 2009 to 2010, helmet use dropped among motorcyclist from 67 percent to 54 percent, according to NHTSA. The Governors Highway Safety Association also said that motorcyclist fatalities in the second half on 2010 was more than the previous year.

As a Seattle motorcycle attorney, I urge riders to make sure their helmets are NHTSA approved. Helmets help save lives in the event of an accident.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact a personal injury lawyer in Seattle.