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Important Information regarding Frontal Head restraint Use
MotorSport New Zealand has received several inquires recently in regard to the use of Frontal Head Restraints (FHR’s) at some New Zealand permanent circuits. A recent edict has directed the mandatory use of FHR’s at the respective venues including at MSNZ permitted events.
The following information is provided to ensure that all competitors and officials are fully advised around the use of FHR’s.
MotorSport New Zealand does not currently mandate the use of FHR’s, other than under some sanctioned regulations. A review by MotorSport NZ has already been conducted as to the use of FHR’s in competition and is at the stage of drafting the relevant Manual amendments.
Frontal Head Restraints devices are only one part of a ‘system’ of occupant protection measures. FHR’s are not considered a stand-alone safety device and there are several other factors that need to be taken into account before using a FHR.
During the course of the MSNZ’s review of FHR’s, it was identified that a number of associated occupant protection systems need to be upgraded before the safe use of a FHR can be assured.
These items include:
- The use of a compatible Helmet. The Helmet used with a FHR needs to be certified to the correct; FIA, Snell or British standard or SFI Specification.
- The use of the correct Safety Harness. The only safety harnesses that can be safely used with a FHR, are of 5 Strap or more configuration and in compliance with FIA 8853/98 or FIA 8853-2016 standard. A 4 Strap harness certified to FIA 8854/98 is not acceptable.
- Safety Harness Shoulder Straps angles. Safety harness angles must be maintained at an angle of between 0° and 20° down (when viewed from the side) and must converge to the attachment point at an angle of between 10° and 25° (when viewed from above).
- The use of a competition seat. The seat must be compliant with FIA 8855-1999 or FIA 8862-2009.
All of these considerations will be included in conjunction with any Manual amendment that MotorSport NZ issues for the mandating of FHR’s.
To ensure that people are fully aware of all the requirements around the use of Frontal Head Restraints we have included two FIA Guideline documents below that should be carefully read.
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