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Heads Up On Motorcycle Helmet Laws In Australia

December 12, 2017 | by AMA Warehouse Admin

This year saw the introduction of European Standard Certified (ECE 22.05) helmets to the list of road-legal helmets in Australia. If you’ve purchased a helmet overseas previously and have run into a spot of trouble with the law over the lack of AS/NZS1698 sticker on your helmet, this is probably going to be a big deal for you!

An ECE 22.05 certification mark, please note the small number may vary but will still be valid.

With the acceptance of E marked helmets, certain manufacturers (such as Airoh) will no longer be required to have their helmets re-certified under Australian Standards. This development will benefit all involved, as wider ranges of previously unavailable helmets will begin to find their way onto our shelves much quicker than they have in the past.

Now, this doesn’t mean every helmet is automatically allowed to be used on Australian roads. As we’re sure you know, Australia has notoriously draconian laws revolving around anything that involves wheels and an engine - so SNELL rated helmets such as those commonly sourced from the US (Bell for example) must still also carry an AS/NZS 1698 sticker unless they also carry the appropriate European Standard.

The familiar AS/NZS1698 label.

Additionally, manufacturers don't generally put these on the back of the helmet at the base like the familiar AS/NZS sticker, the E mark is often hidden on or under the helmet liner, or affixed to the chin strap. 

A Note On Helmet Age

While we've got you here, you may have heard an old wives' tale regarding helmet age circulating. As we are a clearance warehouse, we occasionally stock helmets that weren't built in the past 12-24 months as clearance items. A common misconception is that these helmets are no longer safe to ride in if their age exceeds 3 years past their build date. Currently, Australian law doesn't mandate a 'use by' date for helmets to be road legal, so if we stock a road helmet, it's perfectly legal to use on the road.  

This rumour started as a 'best practice' guide on when to replace a helmet. While it is true that 3 years is a good milestone to replace your helmet; what is often omitted is that this rule applies to helmets worn daily. Over time, oils from your face and scalp may degrade structural and comfort foams. So hypothetically, if you bought two helmets at the same time and wore one on weekends and the other on every weekday, it's safe to assume that the weekend helmet would degrade at a slower rate than the weekday helmet.

While some of our clearance helmets may have been built earlier than others, a helmet that has sat on a shelf is as safe (and legal) as the exact same helmet produced a year or two afterwards as neither helmet have been exposed to oils or UV radiation. There are obviously limits to this though, you can't dig a BNIB helmet from the 80's out of the cupboard and use it as it probably doesn't satisfy much newer AS/NZS1698 and ECE 22.05 safety ratings. 


We take great pride in providing our customers with quality helmets at great prices from your favourite manufacturers for use on Australian roads. As such, all of our road helmets are legal for you to use on the road, just look for the AS/NZS or ECE marking.

Ride Safe!

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