EN 397 Helmets v EN 12492 Helmets

Similar to both industrial helmets and bump caps, mountaineering helmets are subjected to an impact from a falling mass onto a fixed headform.

However, to reflect the nature of the use, additional impacts are required at the front, side and rear of the helmet. These impacts are carried out by tilting the headform on the rigid base at an angle of 60° (so that impacts are carried out at 30° from the horizontal plane of the headform). Impacts are carried out using two strikers, one flat and one hemispherical, each weighing 5kg. Helmets are impacted using the hemispherical striker dropped from a height of 2 metres, and at the front, rear and sides using the flat striker dropped from a height of 500mm. In all cases, the transmitted force through the headform cannot exceed 10kN.


As with industrial helmets and bump caps, mountaineering helmets are intended to provide protection against sharp / pointed objects, and so are tested for penetration by sharp objects. The test in EN 12492 is essentially the same as that specified in EN 397, where a 3kg conical striker is dropped onto the helmet from a height of 1 metre, and any contact between the helmet and headform (although in EN 12492 the headform is in the form of a standard test block) noted. Penetration tests on mountaineering helmets can be carried out on any point around the shell of the helmet however, unlike EN 397, where they are restricted to an area at the crown of the head.

EN 12492 Speciication Helmets