The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is inviting written comments on a petition received from Hövding Sweden AB. This petition is requesting that the Commission exempt “inflatable head protective devices for bicyclists,” such as Hövding's product, from the testing requirements of the Safety Standard for Bicycle Helmets, if such product complies with, and is certified to, requirements in another standard that Hövding states is appropriate to test such products.
Hövding manufactures and markets a product that is intended to prevent or reduce head injuries to bicyclists in a crash. The Hövding product is worn around the cyclist's neck, like a collar. In the event of a crash, it inflates to cover the rider's head for a few seconds and then deflates. Hövding points out that the requirements in the Bike Helmet Standard only anticipate hard shell bike helmets and does not anticipate other types of designs that protect a cyclist's head. Hövding states that protective devices like its product cannot meet the Bike Helmet Standard, as written, because the test procedures are not appropriate for these types of inflatable products. According to Hövding, the Swedish standard, SP-Method 4439, was designed to ensure that some of the performance criteria applied to hard shell helmets in the Bike Helmet Standard are applied to inflatable head protection devices, sufficient to demonstrate that such products can protect a cyclist's head in an accident.
Members of the public may submit comments by mail, in person, or at regulations.gov. More information on what comments the Commission is seeking and instruction for submission is available via the Federal Register notice.