There is no federal law that requires cyclists to wear helmets when they ride, but states can choose whether to require it for their cycling citizens. While there have been several pushes to pass a mandatory helmet law at the state level, Texas is still one of the very few states in the U.S. that do not require bicycle riders of any age to wear helmets. However, cities can also make their own rules about helmet use, and many cities in Texas have chosen to adopt helmet laws to reduce the risks of head injuries in some riders.
Examples of City-Specific Bike Helmet Laws in Texas
Currently, local bike helmet laws only apply to children and teens. While Dallas previously had a law requiring helmets for all riders, that law was changed in 2014. According to the Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute, these are the current helmet laws in place in Texas cities:
- Children under the age of 15 in of Coppell and Southlake are required to wear helmets.
- Children under the age of 16 in Bedford must wear helmets.
- Children under the age of 17 in Benbrook must wear helmets.
- All children under 18 must wear a helmet in Arlington, Austin, Houston, Dallas, and Fort Worth.
For more information about local bike laws in Texas, you can also use the interactive map provided by BikeTexas.
Although bike helmets are not currently required by Texas law, remember that you have the choice to protect yourself when you ride. Helmets have been proven to significantly reduce the risk of traumatic brain injuries in bicycle accidents, and they have saved the lives of cyclists who may not have otherwise survived an accident. A regulation helmet will absorb much of the impact of an accident, potentially preventing damage to the brain, skull, and spinal cord—so don’t forget to put it on.
Negligent Drivers Are Still Responsible for Texas Cyclists’ Injuries
Our attorneys have seen many bike accident cases in Houston and the surrounding areas before, as well as the impact a serious head or brain injury can have on cyclists and their families. Drivers and insurance companies may try to point to a cyclist’s lack of a helmet in order to attempt to deny responsibility for what happened, but the truth is it shouldn’t matter in most cases. The important thing to remember is that, whether or not you were wearing a helmet, the driver who struck you is to blame for your injuries—and he or she should have to pay for them.
To investigate a bicycle accident case for free with an experienced injury lawyer who is local to Houston, call VB Attorneys today at 877-724-7800 or fill out the quick contact form on this page. You may also find it very helpful to read through our free book, The Insider's Guide to Winning Your Texas Car Accident Case, which explains more about your rights and what to expect after you’ve been hurt in an accident.