Do You Have To Wear A Motorcycle Helmet In South Dakota?

Beast Riders is reader-supported. This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Helmet laws are a controversial topic in the US. There are many different opinions on whether or not helmets should be mandatory for all motorcyclists.

Some think it is up to the rider if they want or need to wear a helmet. Others believe that helmets should be required by law for everyone who rides a motorcycle, no matter their age or experience level.

Many people ask, do you have to wear a motorcycle helmet in South Dakota? Yes, you have to but only if you are 18 years old or younger. Not only that, but the state must also approve these helmets. The law may seem simple enough, but it is not.

There are many more things to know, which is why this article is being written. I would recommend reading through it completely so you don’t get into trouble with the authorities in the future.

Motorcycle Helmet Laws And Rules In South Dakota

Lern if you will have to put on a motorcycle helmet or not in South Dakota

Their law is pretty simple; if you’re under 18 years old, you should have a helmet on approved by the South Dakota Department of Transportation (DOT).

If you’re over 18, this rule doesn’t apply to you—but I still recommend wearing one anyway. You can also ride with your face uncovered if your motorcycle has a windshield, but in that case, you should wear eye protection.

The eye protection can’t be tinted too much, or it could make it hard to see while driving. This is not an option; you must obey this law unless you want to be in trouble with the authorities.

Motorcycle Helmet Requirements In SD

In South Dakota, your helmet needs to be approved by the South Dakota Department of Transportation. This means that it has been tested and verified to meet certain standards for safety.

The DOT branding will let you know if the helmet you’re using meets these standards by putting a sticker on it or printing it on the inside of the helmet.

If you don’t see a sticker or notice that it doesn’t match up with what’s printed inside your helmet, then it’s possible that you could be violating state law.

Following this law is important because it is the law and because it has been properly tried and tested by government authorities to make sure they are perfect for road use.

These helmets are impact tested from all sides to ensure they are worthy of being on the road. So, instead of relying on the manufacturers’ unsubstantiated claims, you can trust the DOT sticker.

Penalties/Legal Consequences

Helmet laws in South Dakota are quite clear. If you’re riding a motorcycle, you should have a helmet. You could pay a $100 or less fine if you don’t.

But that’s not the only penalty for not having a helmet. If you get pulled over for not wearing one, and it’s your first offense, maybe they’ll just write you a ticket. But if it happens again and again… well, your license could be suspended.

A new helmet costs about the same amount as the fines you’d have to pay for not wearing one. So why risk getting caught? Wear your helmet and keep yourself safe!

South Dakota And Increased Motorcycle Accidents

The Black Hills of South Dakota are known for their beauty and are one of the most popular places for motorcycle enthusiasts to visit. But these hills have also been home to some disheartening statistics in recent years.

According to official numbers, including the Black Hills, the state has seen a 93% increase in motorcycle accidents since 2019.

That is a massive number, and the main worry is that it does not seem to be slowing down. This trend has been increasing quickly, and dozens of lives have been lost.

So, what’s behind this alarming trend? Several factors are at play here, but one of the biggest is a decline in helmet use among bikers—a decrease from 54% to 45% over two years.

And this is happening despite it being recommended that helmets are important.

With such an increase in fatalities, the South Dakota Department of Transportation should think about readjusting its helmet laws, as it has become increasingly important in recent years.

Enforcing a universal helmet law would result in a much lower fatality rate. It may be met with resistance, but it will be a good decision.

Get In Touch With Experienced Motorcycle Attorneys In South Dakota

The state of South Dakota has some fantastic attorneys. But, you need a lot of research to find them.

I have compiled a list of the best firms that will work day and night to make sure to get the compensation you are looking for.

1. The Law Offices Of Clayborne, Loos & Sabers LLP

This one is a highly rated and experienced law firm helping people in South Dakota for many years. They have been on the Great Plains Super Lawyers List for over five consecutive years, a huge feat.

Their attorneys will fight for you to start living your life again after your accident by getting the right compensation.

They will work hard to ensure that your insurance company does not pay you less than what you are entitled to.

Phone Number: (605)-453-4400

2. Alvine Law Firm

Getting help from a professional is important if we talk about motorcycle accidents. The Alvine Law Firm has helped thousands of people get the compensation after being injured.

They specialize in catastrophic injuries and have worked in this field for many years. Moreover, they offer free consultations for clients who are facing serious injuries from motorcycle accidents.

Their attorneys will work closely with you to ensure your claim includes all the information necessary to get you the best compensation. They have been highly rated on Google, and you should consider them.

Phone Number: (605)-275-0808

3. Northern Plains Justice, LLC

You may have questions about how to seek compensation if you are having a motorcycle accident. The legal team at Northern Plains Justice, LLC can help guide you through seeking compensation for your injuries.

Their attorneys have secured hundreds of thousands of dollars for their clients and can provide a free case evaluation so that you know exactly where your case stands.

They are a personal injury firm based in South Dakota and can be trusted because they have a solid rating on Google.

With dozens of happy and satisfied clients, you should consider Northern Plains Justice, LLC to represent you.

Phone Number: (605)-306-4100

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Is It Ok To Wear An Open Face Helmet In South Dakota?

It is entirely up to you whether or not you want to wear an open-face helmet. If you’re in South Dakota, no laws mandate the use of full-face helmets.

So as long as your helmet is DOT approved and you are above 18, you can feel free to ride in comfort!

Q2. How Much Is The Fine For Not Wearing A Motorcycle Helmet In South Dakota?

Not wearing a motorcycle helmet in South Dakota can cost you around $100 as a fine. If you don’t put on a helmet, you risk your safety on the road.

A helmet costs the same as the fine, and it can save your life and keep you safe if you’re in an accident. So, the question is, why don’t people wear one?

Q3. When Did Motorcycle Helmet Become Law In South Dakota?

Motorcycle helmet law in South Dakota was applied in 1960. This is when the state started requiring riders to have a helmet.

Q4. Should Passengers Wear A Helmet In South Dakota?

The law is that anyone under 18 must have a helmet when riding on a motorcycle. This applies to passengers as well. However, it does not apply to those that are above 18.

Q5. Are Moped Drivers Required To Wear A Helmet In South Dakota?

South Dakota does not have a specific requirement for moped drivers. But I strongly recommend that you should put on a helmet whenever you are on the road, especially if you’re driving a moped.

It will keep you safe, regardless of the fact that it cannot travel at high speeds. You should always be prepared for the unexpected.

You may also be interested in my article: How To Get A Motorcycle License In South Dakota


Finally, if you’re wondering and asking the question of do you have to wear a motorcycle helmet in South Dakota? I’d say; it depends!!

If you’re over 18 and riding a motorcycle, then no, you don’t have to put on a helmet in South Dakota.

But that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea! Helmets can help prevent injuries and save lives, even when you’re not riding at high speeds.

So, if you’re an adult and riding your motorcycle without a helmet on the road, consider wearing one. You should make sure that the helmet is DOT approved.

Or else you will be treated by the authorities like they would treat motorcyclists that weren’t wearing a helmet at all!

Recent Posts