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Directions in Highway Safety, Fall 2007 Cover Page Download Newsletter pdf
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Fall 2007 | Vol. 10 | No. 3

Motorcycle Riders Foundation Launches Campaign Against Helmet Laws, NTSB

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The Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) has launched a new, multi-tiered strategic initiative to counter efforts by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) urging states to enact motorcycle helmet laws. It is the position of the MRF that NTSB is lobbying states with federal tax money based on "poorly drawn conclusions and research." MRF was instrumental in encouraging Congress to ban NHTSA and states from lobbying state legislatures.

The first stage of MRF's campaign is to send lobbying teams to the Hill in November to urge members of Congress to voice opposition to NTSB's efforts. Fact sheets have been created urging Congress to support "crash avoidance" rather than "safer crashing." The lobbying teams are also being asked to thank Congress for the grant program and for the creation of the Motorcycle Advisory Council.

In a November news release, MRF announced they had won the support of Congressman David Obey (D-WI), Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee. The next stage of the MRF campaign will be a press conference with a prominent member of Congress asking NTSB to back away from its position. MRF has not revealed the third stage of the effort, but the organization is considering seeking legislation that would silence NTSB on the helmet issue in much the same way NHTSA and states are currently restricted.