Motorcycle helmets - be safe, look for the Kitemark


28 November 2002

The BSI Kitemark for motorcycle helmets and visors was extended in the year 2000 to include new European regulations.

The regulations, under the UK Road Traffic Act, state that new European regulations can now be used in addition to the current British Standards.

Until recently, the only helmets and visors that could be legally sold for use on the UK's roads had to be Kitemarked to show they met the requirements of BS 6658 and BS 4110.

Now, in addition to this approval, helmets and visors are also legal if approved to United Nations ECE Regulation 22, 05 Series of amendments (Reg 22.05). To avoid confusion, the Kitemark is now offered for all current approvals so motorcyclists can ensure they are protected with BSI.

Although 'E' marked, helmets and visors approved to the less stringent Reg 22.04 cannot legally be sold for use on the road in the UK, this is not the case in mainland Europe where the majority are currently only approved to Reg 22.04. The more stringent Reg 22.05 will be phased in over the next few years throughout most of mainland Europe.

The Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA), which is the UK approval authority for ECE Regulations, has accepted BSI, one of the world' s leading test laboratories for protective headwear, as its first technical service provider for the new European regulations.

Alan Hope, General Manger of BSI Product Services, said: "BSI provides a cost-effective testing and certification service for manufacturers to demonstrate that their products are legal and fit for purpose.

"The Kitemark indicates to the consumer that the product is regularly tested by BSI against the requirements of its related standards and that the manufacturer's quality system is assessed on a regular basis, thus ensuring continued quality of production.

"BSI is proud to be a part of any process that saves lives. We are committed to ensuring that helmets that comply with the law give the best protection available. This is the only way to protect both the motorcyclist and the motor cycle industry in the long term," Alan Hope added.