Extract From 2021 Motorsport UK Blue Book (for full details visit www.motorsportuk.org/resource-centre/)
10.1. Crash helmets bearing an MSA/Motorsport UK approval sticker must be worn at all times during training, practice and competition. The user must ensure that the helmet is to a standard currently specified (10.3.1), that it fits properly, is secured properly and that it is in a serviceable condition. It is strongly recommended that a flame resistant balaclava, helmet bib or face mask also be worn.
10.2. Total protection can never be given by any headgear, and the best of crash helmets may not entirely prevent head injury or death in a severe accident. Helmet users must understand that helmets are deliberately constructed so that the energy of a severe blow will be absorbed by the helmet and thereby partially destroy it. The damage may not be readily apparent; it is essential therefore that any helmet receiving a blow in an accident is either replaced or returned to the manufacturer for competent inspection – this of necessity must be the responsibility of the helmet user, who will have been aware of the circumstances under which the helmet was struck. It is not possible nor indeed reasonable to expect the scrutineer, in every case, to observe significant damage. Where there is any doubt about the helmet’s fitness for its intended purpose then the Chief Scrutineer is empowered to remove the MSA/Motorsport UK Approval Sticker and impound the helmet for the duration of the meeting. This should be a rare occurrence since competitors must appreciate that, once a helmet has served its purpose, it is not only sensible but necessary to replace it. It is the competitor himself who must ensure that the helmet which he uses is fully fit for its purpose; it is clear that this is a small insurance to pay for one’s life. The competitor also might consider that, should he survive an accident, but receive head injuries having knowingly used a previously damaged helmet, he could be placing an enormous burden of care upon his family.
10.2.1. Impounding of helmets
Case 1 Pre-Event. If the helmet does not conform with the required Standards or is in a poor or dangerous condition, the Chief Scrutineer will impound the helmet for the duration of the Meeting, removing the MSA/Motorsport UK sticker. At the close of the Meeting the helmet will be returned, as received, with the exception of the MSA/Motorsport UK sticker, to the competitor concerned. Case 2 Accident during the Event. If the competitor is injured and the helmet is damaged, the Chief Scrutineer will impound the helmet and remove the MSA/Motorsport UK sticker then seek the advice of the Steward as to further action. Case 3 Accident during Event and competitor evacuated to hospital with head injuries. The Chief Scrutineer will make sure that the helmet has been seen by the Chief Medical Officer, he will then impound the helmet and remove the MSA/Motorsport UK sticker. Unless the Chief Medical Officer wishes to retain the helmet it must be despatched to the Technical Department at Motorsport UK. Unless specifically called for by the competitor it will be disposed of after six weeks.
10.3. The competitor is reminded of the following essential criteria when buying or using his helmet:
(a) Correct Standard.
(b) Correct Fit.
10.3.1. Standards. Helmets bearing one of the under mentioned ‘standards’ may be approved by Motorsport UK subject to other criteria being met. See also drawing 10.3.1.
(a) ALL MOTORSPORT UK NATIONAL EVENTS
FIA 8860-2004 (Not valid after 31.12.20)
SNELL SA2010 (Not valid after 31.12.23)
SNELL SA2015 (Not valid after 31.12.26)
SNELL SAH2010 (Not valid after 31.12.23)
(b) In addition the following are acceptable for: Motorsport UK National Kart Racing Events (with exception of Kart Drivers under 15 years of age, Cadet and Bambino Drivers) and Motorsport UK National Junior Drag Racing:
SNELL K2010 (Not valid after 31.12.23)
SNELL – FIA CMR2007
SNELL – FIA CMS2007
SNELL – FIA CMR2016
SNELL – FIA CMS2016
(c) For all International Events please refer to the FIA Regulations. Kart Drivers under 15 years of age, Cadet and Bambino Drivers. The weight of the helmet may be checked at any time during an event and must not weigh more than 1,550g:
SNELL – FIA CMR2007
SNELL – FIA CMS2007
SNELL – FIA CMR2016
SNELL – FIA CMS2016
Part of the approval procedure is to affix a Motorsport UK sticker to the outside of the helmet in the approximate location of the driver’s right ear. Stickers may only be affixed by selected scrutineers, by Motorsport UK at Motorsport UK House, or by selected manufacturers, after the helmet has been checked for conformity with the standard required and is considered to be in a satisfactory condition. MSA/Motorsport UK approval stickers, for which a fee of £2.50 is charged, are printed on foil, and once individually affixed, cannot be reapplied. Note: Stickers supplied since 01/01/08 are individually numbered.
Note that helmet standards are regularly reviewed and updated, and superseded. Standards will periodically cease to be acceptable; hence an element of ‘lifing’ will always remain.
Helmets approved for use in all disciplines require a blue MSA/Motorsport UK sticker to be affixed. Helmets which are accepted for use in kart racing only require a green or yellow where applicable MSA/Motorsport UK sticker to be affixed. These stickers are available from issuing scrutineers.
10.3.2. Fit and Security. To ensure satisfactory fit and security of your helmet, proceed as follows:
(a) Obtain correct size by measuring the crown of your head.
(b) Check that there is no side-to-side movement; a helmet should be as closely fitting as possible consistent with comfort.
(c) Tighten straps securely – the chin strap must be under tension at all times; ensure therefore that the strap cannot slip. Chin cups are prohibited.
(d) With head forward attempt to pull up the back of the helmet, to ensure the helmet cannot be removed in this way.
(e) Ensure you can see clearly over each shoulder.
(f) Make sure nothing impedes your breathing in the helmet and never cover your nose or mouth other than with a flame resistant balaclava or face mask. Helmets with life-support attachments must only be worn if they are connected to a life-support system.
(g) Never wear a scarf, tie or other loose clothing which could come loose and possibly cause an accident.
(h) Ensure that the visor can be opened with one gloved hand.
(i) Satisfy yourself that the back of the helmet provides protection for your neck.
(j) Do not buy from mail order unless you can satisfactorily carry out the above checks; return a helmet unused if it does not fit.
10.3.3. Condition and Care of Helmet
(a) The user himself must bear the prime responsibility for ensuring that his helmet is fit for the purpose intended, since significant damage to the helmet may have been sustained without this being apparent to the scrutineer.
(b) Anything other than minor superficial damage is likely to result in the scrutineer removing the MSA/Motorsport UK sticker and impounding the helmet for the event.
(c) It is in everyone’s interest for the competitor to buy the best helmet he can and to look after it (the best is not necessarily the most expensive). A helmet bag should always be used.
(d) There must be no alteration to the structure of a helmet. Where a radio intercom is fitted this should only be done in accordance with the helmet manufacturer’s instructions. Fitment of cameras to helmets by whatever means is not permitted unless an integral camera is provided by the helmet manufacturer and that model of helmet is approved under one of the accepted standards.
(e) Use only a weak solution of soft soap and water to clean the interior and exterior of the helmet; do not get the interior too wet.
(f) Some moulded plastic helmets although they meet approved standards can be seriously damaged by substances such as petrol, paint, adhesives, cleaning agents and stickers (not the MSA/Motorsport UK stickers) – such damage may not always be apparent; however, crazing or obvious dulling of the surface finish could indicate serious structural weakening of the helmet and is likely to result in the scrutineer removing the MSA/Motorsport UK sticker and impounding the helmet for the event.
(g) The helmet should be stored, preferably in a helmet bag, in a cool dry place away from sunlight when not in use. Do not strap the helmet to the roll cage or allow other unrestrained movement which could cause the helmet to be damaged.
(h) A good helmet, properly cared for, is one very important link in a long chain of safety measures. Do not allow it to become the weak link. Do not rely on others. You are responsible for your own safety. Do not, through your own fault, become a grave burden to others.
10.4. FHR Device
It is permitted to incorporate the use of an FIA approved FHR Device fitted in accordance with FIA regulations and the below. For MSA/Motorsport UK National Events in addition to helmets listed by the FIA as recognised for use with FHR, helmets to Snell SA2015, Snell SA2020 and Snell SAH2010 are accepted subject to the anchorage points being marked as homologated to FIA 8858-2010.
10.4.1. Part of the approval procedure is to affix an MSA/Motorsport UK sticker to the yoke of the FHR device. Stickers may only be affixed by selected scrutineers, by Motorsport UK at Motorsport UK House, or by selected manufacturers, after the FHR device has been checked for conformity with the standard required and is considered to be in a satisfactory condition. MSA/Motorsport UK approval stickers, for which a fee of £2.50 is charged, are printed on foil, and once individually affixed, cannot be reapplied. Note: Stickers are individually numbered.
Where there is any doubt about the device’s fitness for its intended purpose then the Chief Scrutineer is empowered to remove the MSA/Motorsport UK Approval Sticker and impound the FHR Device for the duration of the meeting.
The FHR Device may also be impounded by the Chief Scrutineer in the same cases as the helmet per 10.2