So I think the Catlike Whisper Plus helmet is so cool looking. What is the reason they are not sold in the USA? I have heard that they don't meet US safety standards. Is this because they just haven't gone through the necessary hoops to meet them and they don't feel like investing in it? Or is it that they have tried and failed. Because I find it hard to believe that they can be safe enough for several pro teams and all of Europe, but not for us here in the USA.
Also, lets say I manage to get a hold of one through a UK website. Can I be DQ'd from a race by showing up in one?
EDIT: found this at http://www.prendas.co.uk/details.asp?ID=2191 when searching roadbikereview. Still looking for other first hand knowledge if anyone has any.
EDIT Again: more info from USA Cycling. Looks like they are perfectly legal now and have been since March 3, 2006. However, starting January 1, 2010 they will not be......Important information for customers outside of the European Union.
All Catlike Helmets conform to the European standard CE EN1078. If you intend to use the helmet outside of the EU, Catlike, Nemesis GB and Prendas Ciclismo will not be held responsible for any legal actions or any other forms of actions that may occur.
If you do intend on riding in events in the USA, it is interesting to note that Cycling USA does allow the of CE EN1078 helmets. No doubt you all will have seen the Cervélo TestTeam and/or the Euskaltel/Euskadi team riding Whisper Plus helmets in the 2009 Tour Down Under, Tour of Qatar and Tour of California without issue.
USA Cycling has recently added the European helmet standard to its list of approved standards for legal bicycle racing helmets. In 1986, USA Cycling became the first cycling federation to make hard shell helmets required for all bicycle races. At that time we acknowledged numerous government agencies, such as SNELL, ANSI, and the US CPSC. In the last few years, the UCI has made hard shell helmets mandatory for all races, and a new standard has recently appeared on the market, the European Committee for Standardization. Helmets approved by the European Committee will carry stickers (ECS or CE EN1078) similarly to the stickers found in all American-made helmets.
Here is the text of the revised policy I concerning helmets:
At all times when participating in or preparing for an event held under a USA Cycling permit, including club rides, all licensees who are mounted on a bicycle must wear a securely fastened helmet that meets either the US DOT helmet standards or one of the following standards:
(1) American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Standard Z90.4;
(2) Snell Memorial Foundation Standard "B" or "N" series;
(3) American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standard F-1447.
(4) Canadian Standards Association (CSA) standard CAN/CSA-D113.2-M;
(5) U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) standard for bicycle helmets;
(6) European Committee for Standardization (CE EN1078) standard for bicycle helmets
Riders shall show documentary proof of this, such as a manufacturer's label, upon request by event officials. Beginning January 1, 2010, only the DOT and CPSC helmet standards will be recognized.
This is only a minor change in protocol. You as officials may request to check stickers if you are not sure about a helmet, or for any other reason for that matter. Beware that not all helmets made in Europe are legal helmets with the correct stickers.
I had a rider show up at a race with a questionable helmet. I asked to see the sticker and he showed it to me saying it was a legal helmet but unfortunately it was made in Italy and the sticker was in Italian and he was not sure what it said. I told him I did read Italian and what it said was this, “this helmet has not been tested in any laboratory and cannot be considered safe for bicycle racing”. The moral is that just because a helmet has a sticker does not mean it is legal. Look for the designation CEN on the euro helmets.
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