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Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute

The Helmet Update

Volume 39 - #3 - June 21, 2021

All issues index

VA Tech testing finds 5 Star helmet for $7.45

Summary: Researchers at Virginia Tech tested nine very low cost bicycle helmets provided to helmet promotion programs and found one currently selling for $7.45 that scored among their 5 Star models. Other 5 Star helmets are all selling for more than $75.

The VA Tech testing showed that the low-cost helmets ranked across the STAR scale, with one skate-style model racking up a lower score than the lowest-ranked 2 Star model on the current list. They concluded that the liners of the skate models were too stiff to perform well in their low-impact anti-concussion testing, although they may be able to handle very high impact levels.

The helmets came from Helmets R Us: https://helmetsrus.net/ The 5 Star performer was their Model 09 bicycle helmet. It does not have MIPS, WaveCel or any other internal anti-rotational technology.

VA Tech normally tests only helmets submitted by manufacturers. If they extended their testing this way there might be thousands of 5 Star helmets to be found.

Here is the article in Traffic Injury Prevention, titled A price-performance analysis of the protective capabilities of wholesale bicycle helmets.

We have more on our VA Tech page.