Click here for Fiscal Note
Second Regular Session
Sixty-first General Assembly
LLS NO. 980330.01 JLB
HOUSE BILL 981172
STATE OF COLORADO
BY REPRESENTATIVES Bacon and Saliman
TRANSPORTATION & ENERGY
A BILL FOR AN ACT
CONCERNING A REQUIREMENT THAT A HELMET BE WORN DURING
CERTAIN ACTIVITIES, AND, IN CONNECTION THEREWITH, AUTHORIZING
THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY TO ESTABLISH AN INLINE SKATE
AND BICYCLE HELMET PUBLIC EDUCATION AND AWARENESS PROGRAM.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced
and does not necessarily reflect any amendments that may be subsequently
Makes the following acts a class B traffic infraction, punishable by a fine of $15:
Adds a $15 fine for any violation of the helmet requirement.
Sets forth standards for the required helmets.
Allows first time offenders to pay the fine or provide proof to the court that they have the required helmet. States that parents of children under 12 years of age, not the children, will be cited for the violation. Provides further that children who are between 12 years of age and 16 years of age may be cited or, in the alternative, their parents may be cited.
Exempts persons whose religious beliefs would be violated if they were to wear a helmet. States that the act shall not apply to local authorities that enact laws prohibiting children under 16 years of age from bicycling or inline skating without a helmet.
States that evidence indicating a person failed to have a helmet shall not be admissible to reduce damages or as a defense to an action brought by or on behalf of an injured or deceased bicyclist, bicycle passenger, or inline skater.
Authorizes the department of public safety to establish
a statewide education program concerning the importance of helmet
use for bicyclists and inline skaters.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Colorado:
SECTION 1. Part 14 of article 4 of title 42, Colorado Revised Statutes, is amended BY THE ADDITION OF A NEW SECTION to read:
4241414. Helmet required for bicycling and inline skating penalties exemptions. (1) AS USED IN THIS SECTION, UNLESS THE CONTEXT OTHERWISE REQUIRES:
(a) "HELMET" MEANS HEADGEAR THAT MEETS THE STANDARDS OF THE AMERICAN NATIONAL STANDARDS INSTITUTE OR THE SNELL MEMORIAL FOUNDATION'S STANDARDS FOR PROTECTIVE HEADGEAR FOR USE IN BICYCLING. "HELMET" ALSO MEANS, FOR INLINE SKATING PURPOSES ONLY, HEADGEAR THAT MEETS THE BIKE HELMET STANDARDS OF THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF TESTING AND MATERIALS.
(b) "WEARING A HELMET" MEANS HAVING SUCH HEADGEAR, AS DEFINED IN PARAGRAPH (a) OF THIS SUBSECTION (1), FASTENED SECURELY UPON THE HEAD OF THE WEARER WITH THE HELMET STRAPS SECURELY FASTENED.
(2) EVERY PERSON UNDER SIXTEEN YEARS OF AGE COMMITS THE OFFENSE OF FAILURE TO WEAR A HELMET WHEN SUCH PERSON IS NOT WEARING A HELMET ON A HIGHWAY OR PREMISES OPEN TO THE PUBLIC WHILE SUCH PERSON:
(a) OPERATES OR RIDES A BICYCLE; OR
(b) SKATES OR GLIDES ON INLINE SKATES.
(3) A PERSON COMMITS THE OFFENSE OF ENDANGERING A BICYCLIST OR INLINE SKATER IF SUCH PERSON:
(a) IS THE PARENT OR LEGAL GUARDIAN OF A CHILD UNDER SIXTEEN YEARS OF AGE AND SUCH CHILD OPERATES OR RIDES A BICYCLE OR SKATES OR GLIDES ON INLINE SKATES ON A HIGHWAY OR PREMISES OPEN TO THE PUBLIC WITHOUT WEARING A HELMET; OR
(b) OPERATES A BICYCLE ON A HIGHWAY OR PREMISES OPEN TO THE PUBLIC WHILE CARRYING ANOTHER PERSON WHO IS UNDER SIXTEEN YEARS OF AGE WHO IS NOT WEARING A HELMET.
(4) ANY PERSON WHO VIOLATES THIS SECTION COMMITS A CLASS B TRAFFIC INFRACTION; EXCEPT THAT:
(a) IF A CHILD VIOLATES SUBSECTION (2) OF THIS SECTION AND IS YOUNGER THAN TWELVE YEARS OF AGE, ANY CITATION SHALL BE ISSUED NOT TO SUCH CHILD BUT, PURSUANT TO PARAGRAPH (a) OF SUBSECTION (3) OF THIS SECTION, TO THE PARENT OR LEGAL GUARDIAN OF SUCH CHILD.
(b) IF A CHILD VIOLATES SUBSECTION (2) OF THIS SECTION AND IS AT LEAST TWELVE YEARS OF AGE BUT NOT SIXTEEN YEARS OF AGE, A CITATION MAY BE ISSUED TO SUCH CHILD FOR THE VIOLATION OF SUBSECTION (2) OF THIS SECTION OR, PURSUANT TO PARAGRAPH (b) OF SUBSECTION (3) OF THIS SECTION, TO THE PARENT OR LEGAL GUARDIAN OF SUCH CHILD.
(5) NOTWITHSTANDING ANY PROVISION OF THIS SECTION TO THE CONTRARY:
(a) A PERSON WHOSE RELIGIOUS BELIEFS OR PRACTICES WOULD BE VIOLATED BY THE WEARING OF A HELMET SHALL BE EXEMPT FROM THE REQUIREMENTS OF THIS SECTION;
(b) A LOCAL AUTHORITY THAT ENACTS A TRAFFIC REGULATION PROHIBITING PERSONS UNDER SIXTEEN YEARS OF AGE FROM OPERATING A BICYCLE OR SKATING OR GLIDING ON INLINE SKATES WITHOUT WEARING A HELMET SHALL BE EXEMPT FROM THE REQUIREMENTS OF THIS SECTION.
(6) A PERSON CONVICTED OF VIOLATING SUBSECTION (2) OR (3) OF THIS SECTION FOR THE FIRST TIME SHALL NOT BE REQUIRED TO PAY A FINE IF SUCH PERSON PROVES TO THE SATISFACTION OF THE COURT THAT SUCH PERSON NOW OWNS OR RENTS A HELMET.
(7) EVIDENCE OF A VIOLATION OF THIS SECTION AND EVIDENCE OF LACK OF A HELMET SHALL NOT BE ADMISSIBLE, APPLICABLE, OR EFFECTIVE TO REDUCE THE AMOUNT OF DAMAGES OR TO CONSTITUTE A DEFENSE TO AN ACTION FOR DAMAGES BROUGHT BY OR ON BEHALF OF AN INJURED BICYCLIST, BICYCLE PASSENGER, OR INLINE SKATER, OR THE SURVIVORS OF A DECEASED BICYCLIST, BICYCLE PASSENGER, OR INLINE SKATER, IF SUCH BICYCLIST, BICYCLE PASSENGER, OR INLINE SKATER WAS INJURED OR KILLED AS A RESULT, IN WHOLE OR IN PART, OF THE FAULT OF ANOTHER.
(8) THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY MAY ESTABLISH A STATEWIDE INLINE SKATE AND BICYCLE HELMET PUBLIC EDUCATION AND AWARENESS PROGRAM. ANY SUCH PROGRAM SHALL INCLUDE A PLAN FOR THE COORDINATION OF GOVERNMENT AND PRIVATE EFFORTS TO REDUCE INLINE SKATE AND BICYCLERELATED INJURIES AND FATALITIES.
SECTION 2. 4241701 (4) (a) (I) (N), Colorado Revised Statutes, is amended to read:
4241701. Traffic offenses and infractions classified penalties penalty and surcharge schedule. (4) (a) (I) Except as provided in paragraph (c) of subsection (5) of this section, every person who is convicted of, who admits liability for, or against whom a judgment is entered for a violation of any provision of this title to which the provisions of paragraph (a) or (b) of subsection (5) of this section apply shall be fined or penalized, and have a surcharge levied thereon pursuant to section 244.2104 (1) (b) (I), C.R.S., in accordance with the penalty and surcharge schedule set forth in subsubparagraphs (A) to (P) of this subparagraph (I); or, if no penalty or surcharge is specified in the schedule, the penalty for class A and class B traffic infractions shall be fifteen dollars, and the surcharge shall be two dollars. These penalties and surcharges shall apply whether the defendant acknowledges the defendant's guilt or liability in accordance with the procedure set forth by paragraph (a) of subsection (5) of this section or is found guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction or has judgment entered against the defendant by a county court magistrate. Penalties and surcharges for violating specific sections shall be as follows:
Section Violated Penalty Surcharge
(N) Other offenses:
4241301 (2)(a.5) $ 50.00 $ 6.00
4241402 50.00 6.00
4241403 15.00 2.00
4241404 15.00 2.00
4241406 35.00 4.00
4241407 35.00 4.00
424314 35.00 4.00
4241408 15.00 2.00
4241414 15.00 2.00
SECTION 3. Effective date applicability. This act shall take effect July 1, 1998, and shall apply to violations committed on or after said date.
SECTION 4. Safety clause. The general assembly hereby finds, determines, and declares that this act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, and safety