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Making sense of Kentucky motorcycle helmet laws

If you've ever known anyone who has been involved in a bicycle or motorcycle crash, then you probably understand just how much a helmet can help one avoid significant head injuries. Despite how beneficial helmets can be, in the state of Kentucky, they're only require of motorcyclists in certain situations.

Under state law, bikers under 21 years of age, whether they are operators or passengers on a motorcycle, are required to wear helmets. The same holds true for those who are operating a motorcycle on just a permit or has had their motorcycle license for less than one year.

Those found to be in violation of Kentucky's helmet laws are subject to fines. While these fines can be as low as $20, more common fines are anywhere between $100 to $500.

The Secretary of the Transportation Cabinet is responsible for establishing minimum safety regulations for both helmets and protective eyewear, as well as how both are to be used. The Secretary can also prescribe additional regulations as deemed necessary.

On July 15, 2000, Kentucky legislators passed HB 619, which no longer required those 21-years-old or older to wear a helmet. It additionally did away with a law that required motorcyclists to prove they were covered by health insurance.

The legislation also made helmet laws clear as they relate to passengers. Under Kentucky law, only registered motorcycle owners over 21 years old are permitted to ride without a helmet. For all others, such as passengers, borrowers, or other riders with an out-of-state license, they would be required to wear a helmet.

If you or someone you know was injured or killed in a motorcycle accident in Kentucky, the advice and counsel of an experienced motorbike crash attorney can help you understand your rights, liabilities, and potential compensation as it relates to your case.

Source: BikersRights.com, "Age requirement 21 years old: State of Kentucky," accessed Feb. 03, 2017

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