ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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Hit the Road: Standards Support Safe Cycling


New York, Jul 17, 2009

Sports fans worldwide are avidly watching the progress of their favorite cyclists in this year’s Tour de France. These athletes, along with millions of recreational bicyclists, rely on standards for a swift and safe ride to wherever their finish line may be.

ASTM International, a member and audited designator of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), has developed several American National Standards for bicycle safety. One such standard, ASTM F2043-09, Standard Classification for Bicycle Usage, defines terms used within the bicycle industry and specifies bike usage conditions, specifically for regular paved surfaces where the tires do not lose ground contact when going downhill in a speed over 25 miles per hour.

All cyclists are strongly advised to wear helmets for every bike ride, no matter the distance. ASTM F1446, Standard Test Methods for Equipment and Procedure Used in Evaluating the Performance Characteristics of Protective Headgear, tests the equipment under specified environmental conditions; however, it is up to the users of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices.

Another standard, ASTM F1447-06, Standard Specification for Helmets used in Recreational Bicycling or Roller Skating, addresses performance requirements for helmets while also highlighting the benefits of lightweight construction and ventilation.

Covering six countries and 2,141 miles, the Tour de France is a feat of athleticism that has spectators across the globe on the edges of their seats. With the help of standards, world-class athletes and casual cyclists alike can count on a safe and enjoyable ride.

AN INTRODUCTION TO STANDARDS: WHY, WHERE AND HOW ARE THEY DEVELOPED?