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What is the iso code for helmet?

Helmets are an important piece of protective gear used in various activities like construction work, sports, and transportation. Helmets are designed to protect the head from injury by absorbing impact energy and deflecting blows to the head. To ensure helmets meet safety standards, they are required to comply with certain testing protocols and quality benchmarks. An important system used to regulate helmet safety and quality is the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standards.

Overview of ISO Standards for Helmets

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is an international standard-setting body made up of representatives from various national standards organizations. ISO creates and publishes international standards for a wide range of products and services. These standards help provide quality benchmarks and uniformity in industries around the world.

For helmets, ISO has published several standards that specify requirements and test methods for helmets of different types. Compliance with ISO standards is often required by law for helmets sold in many countries. Some key ISO standards for helmets include:

  • ISO 12401 – Water sports helmets
  • ISO 12402 – Helmets for canoeing and white water sports
  • ISO 10256 – Headforms for use in testing of protective helmets
  • ISO 10262 – Helmets for alpine skiers and snowboarders
  • ISO 16003 – Helmets for pedal cyclists and for users of skateboards and roller skates

These ISO standards outline criteria like impact absorption capacity, retention system strength, field of vision, etc. that helmets must meet. They also describe methods for testing helmet samples to check compliance. ISO standards undergo review and revision periodically to keep pace with technology and safety research.

ISO Code Format

ISO standards are published and catalogued using a standardized system for reference numbers and codes. This helps identify the specific standard and its year of publication or revision. The ISO code format typically follows this pattern:

ISO [number] : [year]

For example:

  • ISO 12401: 2015 – For the ISO standard on water sports helmets published in 2015
  • ISO 12402: 2020 – For the 2020 edition of the ISO helmets standard for canoeing

The ISO number remains the same over revisions with only the year updated. This helps indicate the current in-force version of that particular standard.

Finding ISO Codes for Helmet Standards

The complete catalogue of ISO standards is searchable on the official ISO website Here are some ways to find the specific ISO codes for helmet standards:

  • Search the standards catalogue by subject area for “Protective equipment” or “Head protection”
  • Search using keywords like “helmet”, “headgear” or specific sports
  • Lookup standard numbers if already known, e.g. “ISO 12401”
  • Browse by technical committee responsible, e.g. “ISO/TC 94” for personal safety equipment

This will list all related ISO standards along with their reference code and title. The abstract provides a brief summary of what the standard covers. The full standard can be purchased and downloaded for complete technical details.

Commonly Used ISO Helmet Standards

Here are some commonly encountered ISO standards and codes for different types of helmets:

Helmet Type Standard Number
Bicycle helmets ISO 11243:2016
Skateboard helmets ISO 22269:2022
Football helmets ISO 21801:2022
Equestrian helmets ISO 25178:2009
Motorsports helmets ISO 6220:2015

These provide a quick reference but the full list can be searched on The standards are periodically updated and new ones introduced regularly.

Benefits of Following ISO Helmet Standards

Adherence to ISO helmet standards provides several important benefits:

  • Safety – ISO standards are designed to ensure helmets meet minimum safety criteria for impact protection, stability, vision clearance, etc.
  • Quality – ISO protocols provide quality manufacturing benchmarks to help ensure consistent and reliable helmet production.
  • Consumer trust – Compliance with ISO standards reassures customers about safety and helmets meeting advertised specifications.
  • Regulatory compliance – ISO standards are often required by law for the sale of helmets in many countries.
  • Trade requirements – Global acceptance of ISO standards helps meet import/export requirements in different markets.

By carrying the ISO mark and code, manufacturers signal compliance with globally recognized safety criteria. However, it should be noted ISO codes indicate adherence to design, testing and quality system standards only. Proper helmet fit, maintenance and responsible use are also vital for realizing the intended protection.

ISO Helmet Certification Process

Helmet manufacturers have to undergo a standardized conformity assessment process to claim ISO compliance. The key steps usually include:

  1. Designing helmets to meet requirements outlined in the relevant ISO standard
  2. Testing helmet samples in a certified test laboratory as per ISO test methods
  3. Implementing a quality management system able to maintain conformity across production
  4. Getting certification from an accredited ISO registrar after audits and production checks
  5. Marking helmets with the appropriate ISO designation and certification details
  6. Conducting periodic surveillance audits and re-certification as required by ISO protocols

This helps ensure genuine ISO conformance across design, testing and manufacturing stages. ISO does not itself audit or certify companies’ products. Accredited registrars perform the assessments and issue ISO certifications.

Helmet Recalls Related to ISO Standard Issues

There have been instances where defective or non-compliant helmets had to be recalled from the market due to failure to meet ISO safety criteria:

  • 2018 – Over 30,000 Stackline helmets recalled in Canada for not meeting impact absorption ISO requirements.
  • 2015 – Over 400,000 Bell bike helmets recalled for non-compliance with ISO vision field requirements.
  • 2013 – 15,000 soccer helmets by Full90 recalled in the UK for not meeting impact protection criteria.

These recalls affected thousands of helmets sold. Having proper ISO certification and quality control helps prevent such large-scale lapses that compromise consumer safety. However, problems may still occur necessitating recalls. Following ISO protocols facilitates identifying and rectifying issues when they arise.

The Future of ISO Helmet Standards

ISO helmet standards are continuously evolving to address emerging helmet designs, new materials, improved test methods and changing usage contexts. Some areas of expected development include:

  • Standards for smart helmets with electronics and sensors.
  • Protocols for assessing helmet durability and lifetime usage.
  • Test methods for evaluating rotational or diffuse head impacts.
  • Criteria for helmets used in extreme sports and high-risk occupations.
  • Guidelines for helmet compatibility with other safety gear.

ISO will also continue revising existing standards regularly to incorporate technological progress and new research findings. Participation from government agencies, companies, academia and other stakeholders ensures ISO helmet standards remain relevant and globally aligned.


ISO standards play a vital role in driving helmet safety, effectiveness and quality across various domains. The standardized reference codes allow specific helmet standards to be clearly identified and implemented. Following ISO protocols also signals a manufacturer’s commitment to internationally accepted safety criteria and best practices. With helmets becoming more advanced and specialized, ISO standards will remain crucial to ensure these life-protecting products continue meeting rigorous and up-to-date benchmarks.