Product Safety Commission may not act on
Industry petition for Exemption
A congressional act may be the only way to get
the ban of youth ATVs and motorcycles
A new MIC/SVIA website has been created to help
solve this issue.
Paul Vitrano, General Counsel for the Motorcycle Industry Council
announced a new website called "Stop the Ban"
for several ways to contact Congress to request
relief for the powersports industry. In
addition, MIC issued the following regarding the
lead ban that has affected business and riders
across the nation:
Statement of the Motorcycle Industry Council and
Specialty Vehicle Institute of America regarding
CPSC Ruling on CPSIA.
At a press conference hosted by Rep. Tom Self of
Missouri on March 4, Paul Vitrano, General
Counsel, Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC) and
Specialty Vehicle Institute of America (SVIA)
stated that the powersports industry is being
severely harmed by the ban on most youth
all-terrain vehicles and off-highway
motorcycles. The ban is a result,
unintended or otherwise from the CPSIA
legislation and is a very serious concern
because of the consequences.
With these ATVs unavailable to families, we may
see more kids on adult ATVs. We know this
leads to crashes. The CPSC, the ATV
industry, consumer groups, safety advocates and
parents all agree: It’s critical to keep riders
under the age of 16 off of large ATVs designed
for adults. The CPSC, consumer advocates
and industry have worked for years to get kids
onto youth model ATVs, many of which are now not
available because of the unintended consequences
of this legislation.
In addition, families with smaller dirt bike
enthusiasts may be tempted to put young riders
on motorcycles that are too large for them.
This also raises the risk of injury.
It’s serious because:
The potential losses for the industry are
massive – up to $1 billion in retail economic
value annually. This at a time when our
industry, along with thousands of big and small
businesses, are struggling because of the
economic downturn. Tens of thousands of small
businesses across America have been severely
hurt because these vehicles are sitting in
warehouses and not on showroom floors.
Meanwhile, the sales of goods like protective
gear, accessories, and parts and services, are
Thanks to the efforts of Tom Self and the
thousands of dealers in the industry, the media
is starting to report on the obvious, that kids
won’t eat or lick their ATVs and motorcycles.
While that is true, it is also important to
note that the industry has submitted scientific
evidence using the analytical method required by
the legislation. This evidence proves that
the lead-containing components, parts and
accessories of these vehicles – essential for
safety or functionality issues – pose no risk of
causing measurable increase in blood lead levels
in children aged 12 and younger.
Unfortunately the signals from CPSC are not
good. CPSC Commissioners voted just last
night on procedures for determining exclusions.
Based on both Commissioners' interpretations of
the law, we are not optimistic that the
exclusion for youth model ATVs and dirt bikes
will be granted.
Now the industry is caught in the middle of a
fight between Congress and the CPSC. Congress
gave the CPSC the power to grant merited,
common-sense exclusions, such as ATVs and
off-highway motorcycles, from the lead
standards. We urge the CPSC to grant our
requests for exclusions.
If CPSC believes its hands are tied because
of the way the legislation was written, Congress
needs to amend the law to restore common sense
and make exclusions available for youth ATVs and
These products present no health risk to
children. There is no practical reason for
our industry to be harmed by an unintended
effect of this law. Each day this ban
continues compounds the severe hardship on
businesses and families, and works against the
ATV safety efforts of CPSC, industry and
consumer advocates. And it could well contribute
to more crashes among young dirt bike riders.
Congress and the CPSC need to end this ban –
The National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation
Council, as a national body of OHV recreation
enthusiasts, develops and provides a wide
spectrum of programs, materials and information,
or "tools", to individuals, clubs, associations
and agencies in order to further a positive
future for responsible OHV recreation.