Helmets reduce the risk of death in motorcycle crashes by nearly 40 percent. A new collaboration between the Arizona Motorcycle Safety and Awareness Foundation and RideNow Powersports seeks to get more Arizona motorcyclists secure while also saving them money.
The AMSAF and RideNow helmet program allows motorcyclists to purchase a full-face Department of Transportation-certified helmet at up to half off the MSRP.
“Our goal is to help reduce crashes and fatalities here in Arizona,” said AMSAF executive director Mick Degn. “One thing we heard from a lot of people is, financially, they couldn’t get a good helmet, and were looking for an organization to help get that cost down.”
Applicants for the helmet program are required to have a motorcycle endorsement on their license, fill out an application to the program, and provide a $50 tax-deductible donation to AMSAF.
The program will provide applicants with a credit for $125 off a specified helmet, in addition to 25 percent off the MSRP of the helmet. According to Degn, helmets can range from $200 to $800, and discounts can cut the cost in half. The helmet program is open to all Arizona residents 15 years, six months old or older. Degn said they’ve already sold approximately 50 helmets through the pilot program.
“We chose full-face helmets, because that gives the riders even more safety,” Degn said.
Funds for the program come from donations, sponsorship and grants. While the pilot program began in September, it recently received a large boost in support from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, which is currently in the process of donating $50,000 to the program.
According to Degn, this is still a pilot program and will continue through January. But since the announcement that the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety is donating the $50,000, AMSAF is looking to further promote and increase the scope of the program in the future. While they are currently only partnering with RideNow Powersports, once the pilot program is over, Degn said AMSAF will start looking at other helmet dealers to partner with.
AMSAF is also supported by the Arizona Motorcycle Safety Advisory Council, Law Tigers, Allstate Insurance and the Arizona Trauma Association.
“We also work with the healthcare community and trauma doctors as well,” Degn said. “The doctors are the ones who see the crashes and fatalities first, so they’re very involved with this.”
The AMSAF said they recognize Arizona is a state where riders have a choice on whether to wear a helmet or not, and want to assist those who choose to wear one.
The AMSAF also offers financial assistance scholarships to help get Arizona residents into motorcycle training and supports motorcycle skill competitions. All of this is to fight the fact Arizona averages more than 3,000 motorcycle crashes annually, and those figures are rising.
“From an educational and safety standpoint, we thought the best thing we could do is to get people into motorcycle training,” Degn said. “Our ultimate goal is helping motorcycle riders get a helmet, save money and be safe.”
RideNow Powersports operates two locations in Tucson, at 4375 W. Ina Road and at 7501 E. 22nd St. For more information, and to apply for the helmet pilot program, go to amsaf.org.