Riders should soon be able to buy European-standard helmets in stores when approval to wear the UNECE 22.05 helmets spreads right across the country as soon as next month.
Tasmania today (February 25, 2016), has gazetted the use of the helmets, joining all other states and territories with Western Australia expected to follow next week, leaving South Australia on its own.
When we contacted helmet importers earlier this year asking why they weren’t bringing in any UNECE helmets yet they replied almost unanimously that they would begin importing them as soon as all states and territories made them legal to wear.
Longtime helmet campaigner Wayne Carruthers says Tasmania deserves a complement as they met their commitment to gazette the helmets by the end of February.
It also corresponds with the expected influx of interstate motorcycle tourists after the World Superbikes this weekend and for the Ulysses AGM from February 29-March 6 in Launceston.
“Western Australia is close; perhaps gazetted next week,” he says.
“South Australia is under way but can’t put a precise time on it. They seem sensitive to publishing expectations before final approval is gazetted. They are not being open and communicative.”
In December, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission changed the rules to allow their retail sale, even though Queensland, Victoria, the ACT and Northern Territory already approved their use.
As soon as the ACCC approval came through, NSW approved them.
Even though Queensland was the first to allow the UNECE helmets about a year ago, we still can’t find any available in local motorcycle stores, except the discount warehouses.
Apart from importers wanting to clear existing stock, they also said they would be waiting for all states to approve riders to wear UNECE helmets.
We suspect that they will begin importing a wider range of high-quality helmets that we have not seen before in Australia including brands such as Schuberth and it will open the way for innovative helmets such as the Skully with integrated head-up display and the Sena smart helmet with built-in noise-cancelling technology.