Freedom. That is what riding a motorcycle means to most bikers. Many riders enjoy going without a helmet, giving them what they call, “a complete sense of freedom from having the wind rushing past your body and through your hair.” Although wearing a helmet may not provide that exhilarating feeling while out on the open road, it is the law in Nevada. Both the rider and their passenger are required to wear helmets while riding on public roads or highways. Not only must they wear a helmet, but it must meet specific standards set by the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Can I get a ticket for not wearing a helmet while riding a motorcycle in Nevada?
Riding without a helmet is considered a misdemeanor by Nevada State law. A motorcyclist, as well as the riders of mopeds and tri-mobiles, can be stopped and ticketed for not wearing a helmet. This results in a fine of $205 in the City of Las Vegas and varies across the State. You will also be penalized with two (2) demerit points on your driver’s license for the duration of one (1) year. Note that if you are a repeat offender and accumulate twelve (12) demerit points within a year, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will suspend your license for six months.
Do I have to wear a helmet if I’m riding a moped?
Once exempt from Nevada’s helmet laws, riders of mopeds and trimobiles are now required to wear a helmet. The law took effect as of October 1, 2019, and applies whether or not you own the vehicle yourself.
What is considered a moped? A tri-mobile?
Moped and tri-mobile as defined by the Department of Motor Vehicles of the State of Nevada:
NRS 482.069 “Moped” defined. “Moped” means a motor-driven scooter, motor-driven cycle or similar vehicle that is propelled by a small engine which produces not more than 2 gross brake horsepower, has a displacement of not more than 50 cubic centimeters, or produces not more than 1500 watts final output, and:
- Is designed to travel on not more than three wheels in contact with the ground, but is not a tractor; and
- Is capable of a maximum speed of not more than 30 miles per hour on a flat surface with not more than 1 percent grade in any direction when the motor is engaged.
NRS 482.129 “Tri-mobile” defined. “Tri-mobile” means every motor vehicle equipped with handlebars and a saddle seat and designed to travel with three wheels in contact with the ground, at least one of which is power-driven. The term does not include a motorcycle with a sidecar.
Who is exempt from wearing a helmet in the State of Nevada?
Electric bicycle and off-road vehicle riders are exempt from helmet laws in the State of Nevada. Drivers and riders of three-wheeled vehicles equipped with a steering wheel and an enclosed cab are also exempt from wearing a helmet.
How can I get out of a ticket for not wearing a helmet?
If you have been ticketed for not wearing a helmet, a lawyer may be able to fight it if:
- You can prove that you were on private property and not on a city street or a highway.
- You were not riding a motorcycle or any other vehicle that falls under Nevada helmet laws.
- You were falsely accused.
If you choose to not wear a helmet, have been ticketed and ignored the fine, or failed to show up in court, it is very possible that the judge may issue a bench warrant. When this happens, you could end up in jail. An attorney is your best defense in this type of situation.
Does my helmet meet the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) specifications required by Nevada state law?
The criteria set forth by the DOT in order to determine that a helmet meets the safety standards to protect a rider’s head and brain consist of the following specifications:
- Thick inner liner – one inch made from firm polystyrene foam
- Weight of the helmet – at least three pounds or more
- Chinstrap and rivets – strong and durable, well mounted by rivets
- Design/style of helmet – nothing protruding over two-tenths of an inch above the helmet’s surface other than visor fastenings
Sure signs of a helmet meeting DOT requirements are a DOT sticker on the back of the helmet (usually at the base), as well as potential labels inside a helmet such as Snell or the American National Standards Institute, which are recognized non-profit safety organizations.
It is undeniable that wearing a helmet saves the lives of countless motorcyclists each year. The statistics show that “motorcycle helmets reduce the risk of head injury by 69 percent and reduce the risk of death by 42 percent.” If you have received a ticket for failure to obey Nevada helmet laws and are in need of assistance, call or text your ticket to Ticket Busters at (702) 666-6666 today!