Request to Support
CPSC Exemption for Motorcycles and ATVs
Dear Industry Leaders, Racers, Fans and
Yesterday, a law went into effect prohibiting
the sale of minicycles to children under the age
of 13 as a result of the lead content in the
machines (Consumer Product Safety Improvement
Act of 2008, Title I, Section 101). This law,
which arguably applies to both motorcycles and
ATVs, treats any children's product that
contains more lead than the limit established by
law as a banned hazardous substance.
We have already begun to experience the
devastating consequences of this new legislation
upon our sport, as OEMs have already pulled
these machines from their showroom floors. Youth
racing is the foundation of our sport. That is
when most of you fell in love with motorcycles
in the first place, only to grow up to bring
your own kids back to the racetracks. Only now,
they can't ride.
On behalf of MX Sports (Loretta Lynn's), Racer
Productions (GNCC), and ATVPG (ATV Amateur
Nationals), we are extremely concerned with the
short- and long-range effects of this new
legislation, as the first rounds in all of our
various series are less than two weeks away, and
all include classes for youth racers under the
age of 13. But it's not just our events - WORCS,
NMA, Mini Os, SETRA, etc., are all adversely
It is our opinion that the new law is
inapplicable to off-highway motorsports, as
neither motorcycles nor ATVs have the potential
for ingestion, and lead from motorcycles is not
likely to be absorbed into the bloodstream or
present a health hazard. Let's face it - when
was the last time someone swallowed a
motorcycle? Any other interpretation would be
silly. Be that as it may, the law will continue
to adversely affect our industry unless and
until an exemption is granted.
Presently, there is a petition for an immediate
temporary exemption pending before the Consumer
Product Safety Commission ("CPSC") filed by the
Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC) on behalf of
the OEMs, distributors, and industry
associations. This petition, if granted, would
enable our industry to move forward this racing
season while the applicability of the law to the
off-highway industry is determined.
What can you do?
A form letter for submission to the CPSC in
support of the petition for exemption is
attached, as prepared by the MIC. The
letter will also be available this weekend at
the Indy tradeshow. Simply print out one copy
for each person in your family and submit it
ASAP. In the meantime, AMA is preparing a letter
for submission by its membership to the CPSC. Be
on the lookout for that one as well.
Also, an electronic form letter has been
prepared by State Representative Tom Self of
Missouri. Please go his website at
Just fill in your name and address and hit
"Submit" to register your support. Please submit
this letter on behalf of every member of your
family - regardless of age.
What else can you do?
Contact your congressmen and senators; let them
know that this legislation will have the
unintended consequences of crippling an entire
industry. Surely, it could not have been the
spirit or intent of the new law to apply to
motorcycles or bicycles (which apparently have
lead in the brake cables).
Time is of the essence. The very future of our
sport and of our industry depends on this. We
must support the pending petition before the
commencement of the national racing season.
Please give this matter your immediate
attention, and forward this letter to EVERY
PERSON available ASAP.
Carrie Coombs Russell