Indiana lawmakers weigh requiring helmets for minors on ATVs

The 2017 Indiana legislative session starts this week. Lawmakers will focus on the budget, and are eyeing taxes to help fund roads. (WISH Photo/Nick Natario)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Minors under 18 would have to wear a helmet while riding or operating an off-road vehicle under a measure Indiana lawmakers are considering.

An 11-year-old Indiana girl died in an all-terrain vehicle crash in 2015 and her mother has been pushing to change laws on helmets and safety education. Republican Rep. Lloyd Arnold of Leavenworth says he hopes his measure will educate others and be a tool to keep young kids safe.

Some opponents contend the measure is government overreach and say creating policy based on tragedy is dangerous. Arnold argues the measure would protect children and adds that there were 21 deaths from off-road vehicle accidents in 2016.

Indiana House members have endorsed the bill in a 63-29 vote, sending it to the Senate for consideration.

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