April 15, 2013
There is not a federal law in the United States requiring wearing helmets. Each state can make up their own helmet law. There are three states in the United States that doesn’t have a helmet law, Illinois, Iowa, and New Hampshire. There are nineteen states that has a mandatory helmet law, which is where you are supposed to wear your helmet at all times. These nineteen states are Alabama, California, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington. There is nineteen states that require you to wear a helmet when you are eighteen and under. Those nineteen states are Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Utah, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. Delaware require you to wear a helmet if you are nineteen and under. There are seven states that require you to wear a helmet if you are twenty one and under. Those seven states are Arkansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and Texas.
Twenty four states also have low-power cycles which include motor-driven cycles, mopeds, scooters and various other 2-wheeled cycles excluded from the motorcycle definition. These helmet laws don’t just apply for the driver they also apply to the passenger. Twenty-three states have motorcycle helmet laws that cover all low-power cycles. There are also 201 localities that have local ordinances.
In 1967, the federal government required the states to enact a helmet law. By the early 1970s almost all the states had a universal motorcycle helmet law. In 1968 Michigan was the first state to repeal the helmet law. Then in 1976 states finally got Congress to stop the Department of Transportation from fining states without helmet laws.
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