What States Have Motorcycle Helmet Laws?

What States Have Motorcycle Helmet Laws?

If you love taking long rides on two wheels, you need to know what states have motorcycle helmet laws.

A motorcycle requires you to maintain balance, which is hard enough to do. It is also lighter, so the slightest bump can send it crashing.

In other words, riders like you are more vulnerable on the road compared to car drivers.

In fact, motorcycle accidents are six to 13 times more likely to happen than with all the other types of vehicles.

Granted, most of these accidents are due to human error; you can still prevent them by being a responsible rider.

What States Have Motorcycle Helmet Laws

The best way to promote motorcycle safety is to wear protective gear. It would also help to know the helmet laws wherever the road takes you.

Here’s a rundown of the relevant regulations for each state:

Alabama

If you’re riding in Alabama, you are required by law to wear a helmet. Its exterior must be non-shatterable and resistant to impact and penetration.

Alaska

Riders under 18 years of age are required to wear helmets in Alaska.

Older riders carrying learner’s permits should wear them, too, along with all passengers. 

Plus, everyone must have eye protection unless the motorcycle has a windshield.

Arizona

If you are 18 or older, you do not have to wear a helmet in Arizona.

However, you must wear eye protectors, except if your motorcycle has a windshield. This law does not cover mopeds.

Arkansas

Motorcycle drivers and riders in Arkansas under the age of 21 must wear helmets. What’s more, everyone (regardless of age) must have eye protection.

California

In California, anyone on a motorcycle must wear a helmet, no exception. Each helmet must be DOT-certified.

Colorado

Drivers and passengers in Colorado under the age of 18 must wear helmets that meet DOT standards.

If your helmet does not have eye protection, you must wear safety glasses separately.

Connecticut

The helmet law in Connecticut applies to all riders below the age of 18.

Those caught on a moving motorcycle not following this regulation will be fined up to $90.

Delaware

Motorcycle riders and passengers in Delaware below the age of 19 must wear helmets and protective eyewear.

Those who are older must at least have this protective gear in their possession. The law does not cover mopeds.

District of Columbia

All motorcycle riders in the District of Columbia must wear helmets at all times.

Drivers must also have eye protection, either from the motorcycle windscreen or from wearing eyewear.

Florida

All motorcycle riders and passengers in Florida are required to wear a helmet, but there is an exception.

You can do without it if you are 21 or older and have $10,000 worth of medical benefits from your insurance. Everyone must have eye protection. 

Georgia

All riders must wear helmets and protective eyewear in Georgia, no exception. Mopeds are not subject to this law.

Hawaii

Hawaii law requires all riders under 18 to wear helmets. Additionally, riders of all ages must wear goggles or safety glasses.

Idaho

In Idaho, riders under the age of 18 must wear helmets except when driving on private property. The law does not apply to mopeds.

Illinois

Illinois is one of three states that do not require helmets for riders.

However, you must still wear an acceptable form of eye protection when riding in this state.

Indiana

All motorcycle riders under 18 must wear helmets and eye protection in Indiana.

Iowa

Iowa, like Illinois, does not require helmets for motorcycle drivers and passengers. Also, wearing eye protection is optional.

Kansas

Kansas requires motorcycle riders under the age of 18 to wear helmets. The helmet law in the state used to be universal, but this was repealed in 1976.

Kentucky

In Kentucky, you must wear a helmet if you are under 21. The same law applies even if you are older, but your license is less than one year old.

All riders must have eye protection, regardless of age. This law does not apply to mopeds.

Louisiana

All motorcycle riders in Louisiana must wear a helmet. A neck or chin strap must secure it properly.

Maine

If you’re riding in Maine and you are under 18, you need to wear a helmet.

You should also wear one if you only have a permit or have had your license for less than one year.

Maryland

Maryland implements a universal helmet law, which means that all riders must wear protective headgear and eye protection.

Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, all motorcycle drivers and passengers must wear helmets and eye protection.

Michigan

Drivers and passengers under 21 should wear helmets when riding in Michigan.

Passengers with additional insurance can decide not to wear one. This law does not cover mopeds.

Minnesota

In Minnesota, all riders under 18 and those over 18 but with learner’s permits must wear helmets.

Also, if you are driving with a permit, you should not have a passenger. All drivers and passengers must wear protective eyewear.

Mississippi

Mississippi requires all motorcycle riders and passengers to wear helmets.

Missouri

Drivers under 26, those with a learner’s permit, and all passengers must wear helmets in Missouri.

If you are over 26, you must have health insurance if you do not want to wear a helmet.

what states have motorcycle helmet laws

Montana

If you are under 18, you must wear a helmet when riding in Montana. Mopeds are not subject to this law.

Nebraska

In Nebraska, all motorcycle riders and passengers must wear a helmet that meets federal safety standards.

Nevada

Nevada also practices universal helmet law, so make sure you have yours on when riding in the state.

New Hampshire

New Hampshire, along with Illinois and Iowa, has no helmet law. Wearing eye protection is also optional for both drivers and passengers.

New Jersey

All motorcycle drivers and passengers in New Jersey must have a helmet on when riding. In addition, drivers must have eye protection.

New Mexico

Motorcycle drivers and passengers under 18 must wear helmets in New Mexico. This law does not apply if you’re on a moped.

New York

New York requires all motorcycle riders to wear helmets, and drivers must have eye protection.

However, the law exempts Class C motorcycles with speeds no higher than 20 MPH.

North Carolina

In North Carolina, everyone on a moving motorcycle must wear a helmet. Also, it must have a secure neck or chin strap.

North Dakota

Drivers and passengers under 18 should wear helmets in North Dakota. 

Additionally, a passenger of any age must also wear a helmet if the driver is under 18.

Ohio

In Ohio, a helmet is required for drivers under 18 and those with novice licenses.

Passengers under 18 and those riding with drivers holding novice licenses must also wear helmets.

Eye protection is required for all riders, regardless of age.

Oklahoma

In Oklahoma, all riders and passengers under 18 must wear a helmet when riding. However, eye protection is required for all drivers.

Oregon

Oregon law requires all riders to wear helmets that meet or exceed federal standards.

Pennsylvania

All riders in Pennsylvania under 21 must wear helmets, and everyone must have eye protection.

Rhode Island

Rhode Island has a similar helmet law as Pennsylvania, so a helmet is mandatory for riders under 21.

Also, eye protection is required for all riders, regardless of age.

South Carolina

South Carolina also has a similar helmet law as Pennsylvania, except it does not cover three-wheeled motorcycles.

South Dakota

South Dakota requires riders under 18 to wear helmets that meet federal regulations. All drivers must have eye protection while on the road.

Tennessee

In Tennessee, all motorcycle riders must wear helmets.

In addition, these helmets must comply with the standards of the Snell Foundation and other similar organizations.

Texas

Generally, all motorcycle drivers and passengers in Texas must wear helmets.

However, drivers over 20 who passed a safety course and have $10,000 worth of medical insurance covering motorcycle accidents can forego helmets.

Utah

Utah requires all riders under 21 to wear helmets certified by the DOT.  The state repealed the universal helmet law in 1977.

Vermont

Vermont law requires all motorcycle riders to wear helmets. These helmets must be equipped with neck or chin straps.

Virginia

All motorcycle riders in Virginia must wear helmets that meet Snell Foundation, DOT, or ANSI standards. Additionally, drivers must wear eye protection.

Washington

All motorcycle riders in Washington must wear helmets with chin or neck straps.

Drivers must also wear eye protection if their helmets do not have any.

West Virginia

All motorcycle drivers and passengers in West Virginia must have a helmet on at all times. Also, drivers must have protection for their vision.

Wisconsin

In Wisconsin, riders under 18 and drivers with instructional permits must wear helmets. 

All drivers must have eye protection. This law does not cover mopeds.

Wyoming

Wyoming also requires riders under 18 to wear helmets. These helmets must meet the standards of the DOT. 

In Summary

If you are wondering what states have motorcycle helmet laws, the answer is virtually all.

Only three states do not require you to wear a helmet while riding: Iowa, Illinois, and New Hampshire.

In addition, eye protection is required wherever you go. 

This just shows how important it is to protect your head area while you are on the road, wherever you are.

 

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