Motorcycle helmet law advances in state senate

POSTED: 9:48 PM Mar 13 2013

Legislation that would allow a person to ride a motorcycle without a helmet is advancing in the Senate.

The proposal, sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville, was approved 6-3 in the Senate Transportation Committee on  March 13th. The companion bill was to be heard the same day in the House Finance Subcommittee.

Currently, Bell said there are 31 states that allow riding without a helmet.

Under his proposal, a person would be required to have $25,000 in additional medical coverage, have a minimum 2-year motorcycle license, have taken a motorcycle riding course and be at least 25 years old.

Opponents of the measure, which Gov. Bill Haslam has said he's against, say not wearing a helmet will lead to more deaths and higher costs to hospitals.