Bicycle Helmet Statutes: An Analysis of State Legislation


  • John B. Egberts University of Florida
  • Daniel P. Connaughton University of Florida
  • J.O. Spengler University of Florida



Bicycling is a popular activity; however, like all physical activities, participants are exposed to some risk. While many bicycle-related injuries are not life-threatening, head injuries are fairly common. A bicycle helmet is the single most effective method to reduce head injuries and related fatalities, however, overall use remains low. To address the lack of helmet use, especially among children, legislation has been implemented in a number of states. The purpose of this study was to analyze bicycle helmet statutes in states that had such legislation. A keyword search designed to identify bicycle helmet legislation for all 50 states was conducted by utilizing the LEXIS/NEXIS database. Statutes were analyzed and, based upon the information contained within, placed into a descriptive table by categories. Many of the statutes analyzed have similarities, however, notable differences exist. Comprehensive statutory information is provided in addition to a discussion of categorized results.