News Article

Standard for Speed E-Bike Helmets Published

Laws & Regulations

AMSTERDAM, the Netherlands – In order to equip users of speed e-bikes (S-EPACs) with a suitable helmet, a NEN-project group has developed the NTA 8776 standard. It contains all legal requirements for such helmets. NTA 8776 is now available at NEN.

Standard for Speed E-Bike Helmets Published
NTA 8776 standard for speed e-bike helmets now available at NEN. The helmet in the photo does not comply to NTA 8776. – Photo Stromer

S-EPAC’s, also known as speed e-bikes as well as speed-pedelecs, are bicycles with auxiliary propulsion power, assisting the rider with pedalling up to a maximum of 45 km/h. According to the new EU directive (No 168/2013) on the approval and market surveillance of two- or three-wheel vehicles and quadricycles, the S-EPAC is classified as a moped. For the Netherlands, for instance, this means that wearing a moped helmet (in compliance with ECE R22) is currently mandatory for S-EPAC users.

More protection

However, from 2017 it will also be allowed in the Netherlands as well as in other EU countries to wear a helmet that complies with the new NTA 8776. This helmet looks like a bicycle helmet, but protects against higher impact speeds and covers a larger part of the head. In comparison with the bicycle helmet, the S-EPAC helmet offers particularly more protection for the temporal and occipital areas of the head.

Suitable for use in physical effort

In drafting the NTA, the project group made use of existing knowledge on head protection (a whole range of existing helmet standards, literature) and the results of tests performed on high-end bicycle helmets. Then, using EN 1078 as the base, the project group  redefined its requirements towards the limits of the current technical possibilities in head protection. Next to the increased safety level, other important considerations in defining the requirements were that the helmet should be suitable for use in physical effort and should not impede the hearing ability of the S-EPAC user.

Drafted by international project group

NTA 8776 has been drafted by an international project group with the ambition to turn NTA 8776 within three years into a European standard. The decision to publish NTA 8776 nonetheless, is motivated by the changes in Dutch law and regulations from the 1st of January 2017.

Mark of approval

To be permitted to place a S-EPAC helmet on the market and to be able to use it on public roads, the helmet has to contain a mark of approval which can be found in Annex B of NTA 8776. This mark of approval is tied to an accompanying certification process. Both the mark of approval and the certification process are still in development. At the latest before the 1st of January the mark of approval will be inserted into NTA 8776.

Project group

The project group that has developed NTA 8776 consists of: ABUS, Accell Group, BBB Cycling, Belgian Road Safety Institute, Bell Sports, CONEBI, Gazelle, KASK, MET Helmets, Pon, RAI Vereniging, Riese & Müller, TASS International and TNO.

Availability

NTA 8776 is freely available for perusal. To view NTA 8776 register freely at NEN Connect. NTA 8766 is also available for purchase in the web shop.

More information

For questions about NTA 8776 please contact Robby Veders, Consultant Industry and Safety, telephone No. 0031 15 2 690 1380 or e-mail iv@nen.nl

Download here the Bike Europe Whitepaper on all EU regulations on e-bikes, pedelecs and speed pedelecs.

 

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