If you are starting to ride a moped, scooter or motorcycle on the roads then you need to take responsibility for your safety. Read our advice about helmets and clothing and see the links to further information about rider training and bike maintenance.
The helmet is the most important piece of your kit and you are legally required to wear one when riding. Beware of counterfeit and poor quality products online that will not protect you properly.
Buying a helmet
Don't waste your money, look for these quality marks to make sure you are purchasing a genuine product.
- Genuine and compliant helmets will be labelled UN ECE 22.5 or 22.6 or BS 6658:1985 and carry the BSI Kitemark.
- Look for a label with the UN ECE standard. This will be a circle containing an 'E' and a number that represents the country that certified it.
Look out for
These are warning signs that could mean you are not getting a genuine safety helmet.
- Online products at a lower than expected price.
- Stickers that haven’t been applied properly.
- Not in its original box.
- Lack of booklets, labels and tags.
- Poor quality paintwork or scratches.
- The weight of the helmet.
It may be tempting to save money by buying a used helmet but bear in mind that you will not know the history of it. It may have been poorly cared for and even been damaged previously.
Fitting your helmet
- A helmet that doesn’t fit is not going to offer the best protection from brain injuries so try before you buy.
- To help you choose the right motorcycle crash helmet use the SHARP rating system (link opens in a new window). SHARP is the Safety Helmet Assessment and Rating Programme.
Good quality clothing, gloves and boots will reduce your risk of injury in the event that you come off your bike.
If you want to buy protective clothing look for these labels to be confident that you are getting a good standard of product that has been tested.
- A label showing the protection rating from AAA to B.
- Jackets, trousers and suits should have BS EN 17092, prEN 17092 or FprEN 17092.
- Boots should have EN 13634.
- Gloves should have EN 13594.
The National Young Rider Forum (NYRF)
The NYRF is a group specifically created for young motorcyclists. Their New Rider Hub has videos and advice about:
- buying a bike
- maintaining your bike
- riding safely
- training and the CBT (Compulsory Basic Training)