Wearing a bicycle helmet

All bike and scooter riders are required to wear a bike helmet in Victoria.

Mandatory bicycle helmet laws were introduced in July 1990. This applies when riding:

  • on roads
  • on bike and shared paths
  • in bike lanes
  • in recreational parks
  • in car parks

Police can stop bike and scooter riders and issue a fine or a warning for not wearing an approved bicycle helmet.

Bicycle helmets and public health

In 2016, the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) endorsed a position paper in support of mandatory bicycle helmet laws.

The AHPPC is made up of the Chief Health Officers of each Australian state and territory. They support mandatory bicycle helmet laws as an appropriate preventative measure which benefits the whole community.

Read the background paper.

Research

Research indicates that bike helmets greatly reduce the risk of head injuries, which are the major cause of death and injury to bike riders. 

  • from March 1990 to March 1991, helmet wearing rates in Victoria increased from 31% to 75%.
  • two years after the legislation was introduced, there was a 16% reduction in head injuries in metropolitan Melbourne and a 23% reduction in head injuries throughout Victoria.

Choosing a bicycle helmet

When choosing a bike helmet make sure:

  • it fits firmly and comfortably on your head and cannot be tilted in any direction
  • the straps can be adjusted so there is no slack when fastened
  • it has a sticker showing it is safety approved and meets the Australian/New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 2063
  • it is marked with the symbol of a body accredited by the Joint Accreditation System of Australia and New Zealand (JAS-ANZ)*, certifying compliance with AS/NZS2063. (For helmets manufactured or imported from 1 July 2012.)

* Accredited companies that certify bike helmets can be found on the JAS-ANZ website (External link)

Helmet tips for parents and carers

For information about children wearing bicycle helmets visit Helmet tips for parents and carers

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