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October 23, 2015

Snell Foundation SA2015 Standard Becomes Effective

The Snell Memorial Foundation, Inc. announces that its SA2015 Standard for Protective Headgear which applies to auto racing helmets has become effective since October 1, 2015. There are several changes in test requirements and procedures in the new SA2015 standard.

Changes include:

  • SA2015 helmets must be ready for the addition of frontal restraint tether hardware such as used in HANS® and other systems.
  • SA2015 includes provisions for “Low Velocity” impact testing.
  • SA2015 includes “Low Lateral” impacts in case of strikes against side window frames and similar structures.

Our advice to Safety Inspectors and Racing Authorities is that they continue to accept helmets in good condition and certified either to the current or immediately previous Snell standard. At this time, SA2015 is the current Snell standard and SA2010 is the immediately previous.

Snell urges everyone to replace their Snell certified helmets routinely no later than five years after the helmet is first worn. However, even by this conservative advice, many SA2010 certified helmets still have years of service in them. Unless a helmet has been damaged, or has five or more years of use, or is no longer accepted by safety inspectors or track authorities, there may be no need to replace it.

Please direct any questions, comments and requests for copies of the SA2015 Standard to or call 916-331-5073.

       pdf version